Sunday, October 14, 2012
I sat on our deck in a blue fold-up lawn chair and the cloudy sky reflected my clouded eyes - heart weary from searching and heavy with unanswered questions.
The ballpoint pen in my hand stumbled across the page, desperate almost, until my unspoken questions stared back at me in blue ink:
I've been wrestling lately. Wrestling with myself, with God, with what I believe.
What do I believe?
I've asked myself that question a lot lately.
I've always been taught that God love us unconditionally, that nothing we could possibly do would ever separate us from the love of God.
And I've always believed it. I never had a reason not to.
But what about now?
What about when simple childlike faith fades and focus is lost and promises forgotten?
What about when wise counsel is scorned and selfish desires are pursued?
What about when choices are made and people are hurt and the heart is hardened against what is right?
What then? Does He still love us then?
When we purposely turn from His love to chase temporary fulfillment and earthly passions?
Does He take back the broken, rebellious heart without hesitation, without some kind of cost?
I knew - that we are forgiven by the sacrifice of God's Son on the cross, that we are not longer bound by sin.
But I was still so heavy.
I had asked the question in Sunday School: Why is it easier to believe in a judging God than a forgiving One?
Odd for me - to voice my uncertainties.
I wondered again.
Is this not the enemy's greatest tactic? To cut us off and get us alone, to weigh us so heavy with our own guilt and condemnation that we believe there is no hope...
So we buy the lie and in doing so, hide ourselves away from the only hand that can save us.
"Our task is not to get up but to admit we are dead." -Max Lucado
The book in my hand spoke deep. In the Grip of Grace.
"But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved." Ephesians 2:4-5 NIV
Sitting weary on that blue flowered lawn chair and stumbling for truth, but not really expecting to find it, God-truth sinks deep and penetrates layers of troubled heart.
"God has a way to make people right with him without the law, and he has now shown us that way which the law and the prophets told us about. God makes people right with himself through their faith in Jesus Christ." Romans 3:21-22 NCV
By grace. Through faith. Because of His love.
That's it. Have faith. That's all I have to do: Believe.
"Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved..." Acts 16:31 NIV
Long suppressed tears threaten to spill.
Sometimes we cannot truly know until we truly need.
With the plea of the boy's father, "I do believe: help me overcome my unbelief!" I thank Him in faith.
As grace falls and permeates every sorrow and every guilt, peace creeps in slow and spreads warm from the heart for the first time in too long.
"Though we were spiritually dead because of the things we did against God, he gave us new life with Christ." Ephesians 2:5 NCV
New life. It's time.