I have so many thoughts in my head these days I don't know that I can coherently divulge them, but considering my audience to be much slimmer with my decision to remove Facebook from my life, I'm less worried about that and more worried about just getting them out. So here goes.
Lately I have been feeling slightly neurotic from "morbid introspection" as our chapel speaker conveyed it. I've been going over and over in my head about how my failed relationship from two semesters ago was supposed to be understood by now. It was supposed to have added significantly to my life and helped me live better, and in some ways it has. But in a lot more ways it has confused me more, made me less inclined to listen, given me less patience with extremely rational people. A lyric from The Civil Wars expresses my thoughts perfectly: "I don't love you anymore, but I always will." And the always will part is haunting me. Or at least I thought it was. I thought it was keeping me from understanding why God put me through this. I'm so utterly confused about my past & it's deeply affecting my present. But as I began to come to grips with my true feelings, God intervened with a chapel message that seeped deep into my very core.
We have been justified through nothing else.
And I started reading in 2 Timothy 3: "But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God--having a form of godliness but denying its power."
DENYING ITS POWER. Not being able to accept it. I mean think on this for a second. How do compliments make you feel sometimes? They make you feel good but sometimes awkward. Sometimes the source doesn't seem trustworthy, and sometimes we just flatly deny their claim. But what if the compliment is directed back at the compliment-giver? For example, your mom says, "I'm so proud to be called your mom." This is a step in the right direction in grasping grace. But even more than that. What if you fell in love and your lover's eyes said it all? Your lover is overflowing with abundant love for you, never tiring of your weakness or your insecurities, always giving, fierce in passion over you. Your lover looks at you and you want to cry for the intensity of their jealous love for you. There is no question--you are safe. You are theirs. Forever. But even MORE than that...your Lover is flawless. Omnipotent. The Beginning and the End. Has the last say. Has spoken for your heart. Intricately made you EXACTLY who you are. Made no mistake. This lover is Jesus Christ. Not only do we reject what He offers but we claim something better. We claim our control is more trustworthy--at least we understand it. We don't though, not really, not even our own control. Because we don't know the repercussions of our actions at times, and we don't know how they affect certain people. It's a facade of control, yet we settle for it. The thing is we don't do this because we don't think God's grace is good enough. We do it because we are TERRIFIED.
We run from that which threatens to change us. We are afraid of being daily brought to tears by something so unfathomable. So we say instead, "It can't be." God's grace can't exist, we justify, maybe not openly to anything other than our heart of hearts, because I don't know how to accept it.
HIS GRACE IS SUFFICIENT.
I have a form of godliness. But up to this point in my life I have denied its power. We keep working for our own salvation, trying to be better, trying to improve. And God scoffs. He thinks it's disgusting. Our attempts are like the dirt on the bottom of a shoe. What would it mean to live out of the grace of God?
IT MEANS YOU ARE ENOUGH. YOU'RE NOT TOO MUCH. YOU ARE A CHILD OF THE LIVING GOD.
He is fiercely devoted to seeing your sanctification complete. And as our chapel speaker said today, our sanctification is learning how to accept our justification.
And as mini wanna-be gods, this takes us a lifetime.
We can claim no security except in that which sustains us. He goes by many names, but He is one. We can know no certainty in this world, but He is not of the world.
GRACE. Believe it. Accept it. And go forth, my child.