Friday, December 14, 2012

The beauty of grace....

"Take time to be holy.  The word holy does not mean goody-goody; it means set apart for sacred use.  That is what these quiet moments in My Presence are accomplishing within you.  As you focus your mind and heart on Me, you are being transformed: re-created into the one I designed you to be.  This process requires blocks of time set aside for communion with Me."  Jesus Calling, Dec. 14

Isn't this refreshing!?  One of my best friends and I were talking about this yesterday.  I think it is so easy to focus on the "doing" of our relationship with Jesus.  Or if we don't know Jesus, that is why.  Because we feel like it would be too hard.  We have to do better, or be better.  Try harder.  That is not what our relationship with Jesus is about!  I think the enemy twists the truth (well we know he does) and makes us think that it is about the work that we do.  ha, well guess what Satan, it is not about us and how good we are!  It is about Jesus and how GOOD He is, and the sacrifice that he made for us and paid for us, so that we could be in this amazing loving relationship with HIM!  Covered by grace, not trying to keep the law.  Under the law, there is death.  We can not grow in a relationship with Him under the law.  We will never be good enough, therefore it brings death.  But Grace!!  Undeserved merit and favor, that comes from God alone, now that brings freedom!!  The freedom to fail, the freedom to try, the freedom to just BE.  And as Jesus Calling has said today, we do not have to be holy, to be perfect to try to prove ourselves to God or anyone else, but to be set  For the work that Jesus wants to do in us.  The work that He alone can do in us, when we surrender ourselves to him, and offer ourselves up to him so that he can do in us and through us, what we would NEVER be able to do alone.  What was life-changing for me several years back, was when God finally took the scales off my eyes.  I had been trying to live a perfect life and not mess up...ever.  If I did I would berate myself.  Then His Word jumped out at me and he said, "Monica, if you were perfect, then I died in vain!  I died for nothing, if you could be perfect enough and do everything on your own!  There would have been no need for me coming to earth and dying for YOUR sins."  WOWZA!  That hit me square between the eyes, and led me to repentance as I realized the way I had been living, in my desire to please God had essentially led me to a performance treadmill.  That was not my heart, it was not me intentionally trying to be in control.  Nevertheless I was there.  But there is something about surrender.  About acknowledging the fact that we don't have it altogether, and we never will.  But with Jesus we can do anything and everything that he has laid out for us.  It is not a crutch.  Jesus is not a crutch.  He is our HOPE!  Our only hope of anything good coming out of this life, the pain and the heartache that we face. and for our life eternally.  Oh that brings me joy.  Jesus just wants to love us.  And there is so much of ourselves that get in the way of allowing him to love us.  And it started in the Garden of Eden, when Satan twisted the truth and lied to Eve and her man.  Our own desire for control, started there, and it has not left us... ever.  Only by the grace and love of Jesus can we come out from under that heavy burden.  That is a heavy load! To try to figure things out in life, and what to do?  What path to take?  How to navigate through hurt and pain that changes our lives.  What do we do with that??  How amazing to release that control and surrender to the ONE who holds the world in HIS hands, who knows ALL things!?  Give the burden to Jesus and let Him carry it for us, now that is freeing....... and He wants it, and then we know Him more.  I can tell you that there is NOTHING better.  I am free.  And it's not because I have everything I desire.  It is because Jesus has revealed himself to me as I have surrendered to Him and His will.  He has met me there.  In His pool of grace.