Last night at Beloved, a woman came to share her story– a real ashes to beauty kind of story. One of my favorite things about being in a community of believers is hearing what God has done in someone’s life. To hear how He takes our sin-nature and redeems our lives.In almost every story I hear (and speaking from my own experience), the person finally gets to a place where they are at their wits end, they are in the pit of despair, they feel no hope, but God…
At the cry of our voice, our loving Father steps in to literally save the day- He is our Savior, after all. He steps in with the characteristics that only He holds: unconditional love, relentless mercy, unyielding grace. He forgives, He re-directs, He restores, and He redeems.
Our story-teller reminded us of the story of Ruth in the Bible. How she stayed close to the Lord, and how He took care of her. Ruth was simply looking to do the right thing– and the Lord provided her MORE than she could even ask for. That is who our God is– He is not looking to just give you what is just enough, He wants to give us exceedingly more than we could ask or imagine.
Since we are infinite beings, we don’t know exactly what the Lord has in store for us– remain single, get married, move to Hawaii (hmm…), stay in Glynn County… But we what we do know with absolute assurance is that whatever God has for us in the future, it is good.
Everytime I hear someone’s “story” about what God has done in their lives, it reminds me of the gospel. Since we are all sinners, we are separated from God; leaving us in a state of desperation for Him. So God sent his son, Jesus, to live on this Earth as fully God and fully man. Jesus was just like us except for He never sinned. Then, he DIED the most gruesome death on a cross for you and me so that His actual blood can cover our sins. Three days later, He rose from the dead proving that He is in fact not dead, but alive. He is still living today– He is so living, so active, and so real. Because He lives, we can choose to believe in Him and accept Him as the ruler of our lives. In return of this belief and acceptance we get the best gift: life eternal in Heaven with Him when we leave this Earth (anybody ready for that?!).
So no matter what you have done in the past, or the bad decisions you have made, know that the Lord wants for you to come to Him and ask for forgiveness. He will forgive you no matter what. But then, choose to start walking in a new direction- towards our Father. Keep your eyes on Him and surrender every part of your life to him. Trust Him with all your being, and when He speaks to you, obey His leadings. Don’t stay stuck in the shame of the guilt of the past, choose to start walking with Him today. He has new beginnings for you friends, and His way is good.
Lord we admit that we are sinners and that we need You. Please forgive our sins, any words, thoughts, and actions that are displeasing to You. Thank you for the gift of Your Son Jesus. We believe that you sent Him to this Earth, that He lived a perfect life, that He died on the cross, and that He rose again. Help us keep You as the ruler of our lives. Help us live our lives on this Earth in a way that is pleasing to You. Thank you for the hope of Heaven and that this life is not our ending place.