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You are enough.

“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.  They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them.  We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us.  This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood” (1 John 4:4-6 NIV).  

I want you to do me a favor.  Stop allowing those voices that tell you that you’re not enough to creep in.  Give yourself some grace.  Remember, Jesus thought you were worth it.  You are so, so worth grace and forgiveness.  Forgive yourself.   

Whatever burden you are carrying right now, drop it.  I don’t know what it is.  But He does.  And that’s what matters.  Put it in His hands and leave it there.  Walk away and never look back.  I wish you could see what Jesus sees when He sees you.   

And, while we’re at it, look around.  Forgive everyone around you, too.  They don’t deserve it.  But guess what, it doesn’t matter.  When Jesus’ hands were nailed to a tree for you, neither did you. You never will deserve it.  If you could earn it, there wouldn’t have been a reason for Jesus to come.  It wouldn’t have been sacrificial love.  It wouldn’t have been forgiveness. You were an imperfect person while He was the perfect Son of God who CHOSE to come to earth and die for your sin.  

You’re hurting. You’re broken.  But your story isn’t over.  You just must flip the page.  Here’s the thing, you must make a conscious choice every day to flip the page.  You can’t be stagnant.  You must move on.  Life goes on.  And if you’re not actively seeking His kingdom, time is going to pass you by and you’re going to regret the time that you waste.   

Moral of the story: you are a child of God.  Therefore, focus on giving both yourself and others grace and forgiveness.  Because God is going to use you in ways that you can’t even imagine.   YouAreEnough

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Slaves to Unforgiveness (Part 2)

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“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from my cries of anguish?” (Psalm 22:1 NIV)

How often, in some form or another, do we, like Jesus–use these words?

It’s okay for us to be mad or upset with God.  But we can’t be overcome with our anger. We have to be willing to go to God, even while we are mad at Him, and literally ask Him to help us to forgive Him. Because He’s the one who can heal our hearts; even when they are hard against Him.

We have to spend some serious time with God, including both some confession time and worship.  Because there might be things that you didn’t even realize you did in your anger against Him that will get in the way of your relationship with Him.  It’s incredibly easy to fall into a place of deep anger with God without even realizing it.

I’ve found myself completely overwhelmed lately, with schoolwork, with planning other things, with just flat out busyness. So I have to spend some time right now, even in my craziness and look back a year or so to where I was so mad at God that I honestly didn’t even want to pray. Because no matter how overwhelmed I am right now, I’m not in a place where my only thought is:

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Psalm 22:1 NIV)

The beautiful thing is, when Jesus said these words on the cross (Matthew 27:46), He knew that God could have saved His life yet God chose not to because Jesus, the sinless Son of God, came to earth to die for the sins of man.

God never abandoned me, He had already sent His son to die in my place before I was born. Any thought that He did just made me angry without even realizing i was angry. That brings me back to this week’s verse of the week:

“A man is a slave to whatever has mastered him.” 2 Peter 2:19 NIV

 

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Slaves to Unforgiveness (Part 1)

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Disclosure: In order to fund this blog, this post contains affiliate links.  That means that if you make a purchase using a link in this post, I may make a portion of the profit from that purchase.    

I think it’s funny how God likes to use my own words against me in a “haha, not funny” kind of way.  I’m writing a devotional right now, so I’m going through and editing it and  came to a portion when I discussed forgiveness. I felt like I was getting a smack in the face.  From myself.

 

“A man is a slave to whatever has mastered him.” 2 Peter 2:19 NIV

There is a particular situation that I will not actually go into the details with that I let get into my head way further than I knew it could go.  I played out situations in my head with this person that I thought could happen that I knew would never happen because I thought they were mad at me or would turn the tables on me, when in all reality it was solely a one-way street.  I was the only slave.  I’m pretty sure they don’t have a clue that I’m upset with them, and what I wasn’t getting until now was, it doesn’t matter.

“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.  Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walking in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” Ephesians 4:32-5:2 NIV

As followers of Christ, we are called to strive to live as Jesus did.  This means forgiving others.  When we hold on to unforgiveness, we’re not truly loving.  We’re not acting as Christ would.

“A new command I give you: Love one another.  As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.” John 13:34 NIV

So, this whole time I just wanted to be heard.  To be listened to.

I had to come to the realization that I wasn’t going to change them.  I had to change my expectations for them.  Because in all reality, they weren’t fair.  I don’t get to expect people to act the same way I expect myself to act.  Nor do I get to expect people to be mind readers.

What did Jesus say about forgiveness? You forgive people over and over if they sin against you (Matthew 18:21-22).  He didn’t say just if they only offend you a little bit, or once you’ve relished in your anger a little bit, then forgive them. There were no conditions. Just like there are no conditions to our forgiveness.

Part 2 will be up tomorrow! 🙂