Thursday, May 28, 2009

{sHaCkLeS aNd ChAiNs}

Without a doubt summer is here and with it comes HOT! Not my favorite thing in the world, mind you. Being hot, I mean. I like warm sun on my face and occasional swims and frolicking in the rays from time to time, but on an in and out basis, hot is just HOT to me. Not so much a fan.

But there is something I want to be HOT over. I want to be ON FIRE HOT for Jesus! Hot for Him sounds good to me!

In the past year I was under the impression that I was just hurting and eeking through it without a great deal of gain, outside of really knowing that the Lord was with me through it all. And yes, that is definitely something to note, I certainly do not want to come off as ungrateful about that, I so am. But I have just recently also looked back on the past year and seen just how much God has been doing in a way that I never noticed before. Just how much He was doing in and around ME. By that I mean, that through all of the tragedy that I have needed to endure this year, I have let go of strength in Him that has been mine, free of cost and relied on my own feeble ideas of coping, strength, comfort etc. And inspight of stupid choices and fearing trusting Him fully, He has used it to teach me and hopefully grow me more in Him.

In my 20's I boldly professed my faith and then proceeded to waltz around in this world, very much of this world, and making zero quality witness as to what Jesus can and is doing for me and my life. I melded in with everybody else. I wasn't hot or cold. I somehow didn't really know any better. There was no descipling done in my life and it was just good enough to get me in the door! But somewhere along the way, and most certainly after I became a mommy at 27, I had a real road to Damascus moment with God that opened my spiritual eyes forever. It was then that my flesh nature and all the sin that I had committed became neon real to me and it broke my heart. So much so that I repented and sought after God like never before in my life. My sin is what killed Jesus.

But with disappointment after disappointment and tragedy after tragedy, something within my faith world began to darken. And with it darkened my resolve, my heart, and my hope. Soon I was face to face with that flesh nature and all of it's weaknesses. It was whispering to me louder and with much more tenacity then I ever remembered before. It didn't take long to figure out, thank God, that this flesh nature wants me dead.

We all have different "apples". Something that calls to us from the sidelines/garden. It could be drugs, alcohol, sexual temptation, food, power, money, etc. We each have something that wants nothing more then to trip us up and get us off the track to run the race that we have been called to. As my very good friend so poignantly put it as she was describing herself, "I am convinced that my flesh is trying to put me into an early grave!" YOU'RE DARN RIGHT IT IS! (It's in cahoots with Lucifer, you All kidding aside, we are being stalked and Satan's goal is to take us out of the race. The very race that grows us to mature spiritually, and gains God much fame and glory! And if Satan can't kill us, he's happy to push us until we kill ourselves somehow!

I am challenging myself lately to constantly be reminded of the place that I have been saved from. The dark pit that was my dwelling place for far too long. Do you remember yours? It's not to condemn ourselves, or feel sorry for ourselves, but instead to help keep us in a place of shere gratitude for the gift of salvation we have been given. Thank you Jesus for saving me from myself! My prayer is that we, you and I, will be mindful of the shackles and chains that we have had removed at the very costly price of a sinless King that loved us so much....He died for us.


Remember the chains. No need to pick them up again, just....

Run to the cross!


Ruth said...

Amen!, sister. I so love you and your so gospel centered, cross focused, Jesus loving perspective. I am in this race with you and we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. I just love and am really grasping that Christ IS and ENABLES my righteousness. Praise God for the sacrifice of His son on the cross for my sins that I might have freedom and eternal life. I can't wait till we can join with our sons and praise God in heaven together!!! but until then, we are in battle and must remain engaged and armed with the WORD of Truth! LOVE you!!! Keep up the good fight, you are a faithful servant. Your sister in HIM! Ruth

Jennifer Ross said...

It's the chains that I always visit again and again. That's one thing that I have been working on. It's a lot of work, but totally worth it. Great post.

Rachel said...

Thanks for being Biblically inspiring! Jesus is using you in mighty ways!