… He gave me life forever more.
A worship leader in my church wrote a song to this piece of Scripture and earlier this week I shared it with another person as encouragement from God. It really spoke to them at the time and now as I sit to write about recent things God is doing in my life, it really speaks to me.
First, I want to say how good, and wonderful, and (duh) true truth is. A revelation, I know. It blows my mind that God gave us His TRUTH in this book called the Bible and it is never false. It is never out-of-date, and it is never irrelevant. The best part is that it could be read inside and out and serve a multitude of purposes one year, then be read the same way the next year and address a whole new series of things and continue to grow someone in their faith. Year after year after year. Amazing.
Second, Satan’s guilt is heavy. Not heavy enough to ever overcome God’s truth, but certainly heavy enough to cause plenty of destruction and put up a damn good fight.
Last night this was blatantly apparent. For the last two months I’ve had the privilege to be a part of a Truth study with the high school girls at my church. We’ve been going through the book Lies Young Women Believe… and the truth that sets them free. Initially I thought this book would be flaky or irrelevant to me. WRONG. God’s Truth is never irrelevant. Last night’s meeting was on the topic of guys and lies we believe about them (I can almost hear EVERY female reading this exhale a large sigh of understanding…!)
Lots of people shared their experiences and mistakes and we talked about God’s forgiveness. However one thing became quite apparent during ministry time with one another. We know that God forgives us, but we have to forgive ourselves!! It is not enough to know that God forgives us if we don’t truly feel forgiven. We have to take the next step and understand why we must forgive ourselves… because of what Jesus did for us on the cross. If we were fully able to wrap our minds around the reality of what that means we would not be able to hold ourselves in contempt.
I don’t think this situation could have been more true for me. I have sexual brokenness that I am not even able to begin to write about. I’m just beginning my journey. Last night as I was receiving prayer I could feel the battle between light and darkness. The most beautiful and true part was that Jesus reminded me that He has cast my sin as far as the East is from the West. That HE no longer keeps count of it. It is erased in His eyes.
The ugly part was that because I am not yet able to forgive myself (although I do feel God has forgiven me), Satan was able to put a wrench in that little crack and fill it with guilt. Earlier that day I had painted my toes for the first time in months: a perfect baby doll pink. And as I looked down at my freshly painted girly toes, guilt came into mind:
“You don’t deserve to have sweet, innocent colors on your toes. You are not Daddy’s little girl. You are not Jesus’ little girl. You don’t deserve to feel like a beautiful princess.”
Someone wanna argue and say that was from the Lord? I think not. The Enemy took a seriously low blow and was playing on my guilt. On that crack that I still have. Which I believe many girls have.
But here’s the Good News… Jesus doesn’t want to just fill in our cracks. If we will let Him, He wants to open up our wounds that have healed up okay and clean them out. He wants to remove any trace of yuck that is preventing the wound from healing perfectly. Then He wants to seal the deal, leaving no scars, no trace of imperfection. He wants to make us new.
That’s what He shared with me last night and I think it totally trumps Satan’s plan. He came to me sweetly and lovingly and said, “Jenn, I know this is going to hurt and I know you’re scared but I want you to trust me. I want to reopen this wound you’ve had for so long that never got cleaned out properly. It is not going to be easy and it might take much longer than you’d anticipated but it’s my plan for you and it’s going to be so good.”
There is a big difference between forgiveness and healing. God has forgiven my sin but that doesn’t mean it’s healed. I’m totally exhausted but I know it’s time to start the healing process. So today I have a new song in my mouth because He puts a crown upon my head even when I’m a sinner and feel undeserving. He loves me and treats me lavishly when the things I’ve done are hideous in His eyes. He gives me reason to sing, He crowns me a princess and His little girl, and He gives me LIFE forevermore.
Sounds like a pretty good deal to me.