Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Suffering for our own faults
Romans 7: 21-25
What a time we are living in. I shake my head and wonder how it came to be like this. I am tempted to despair as I watch things slowly collapsing around me. I feel like the Psalmist, who said, "There are many who say,“Who will show us any good?” LORD, lift up the light of Your countenance upon us." Psalm 4:6
Today I despaired because of my own sin. On top of that, I heard of a young man (a friend of my son's) who took his own life. I walked past the funeral home where people came from all over to give their condolences. I never saw so many cars lined up everywhere for a funeral. I couldn't help but think to myself, if only the young man would have known how many people cared about him, maybe he wouldn't have ended it that way? But it is too late now, too late for second chances, too late to tell him anything. He has passed beyond the veil.
And yet I remain on this earth, wondering what will happen next, and somehow must find strength to keep running faith's race. I didn't feel well today, and I let it get to me. I argued with my husband and then felt angry with myself for what I said. Yet why was I expecting anything good to come out of me, from my own human viewpoint without relying on Christ?
John Nelson Darby wrote once that, "We find the greatest difficulty often in bringing our sorrow to God. How can I do so, some may be saying, as my sorrow is the fruit of my sin? How can I take it to God? If I was suffering for righteousness' sake, then I would, but I am suffering for my sin; and can I, in the integrity of my heart towards God, take my sorrows to Him, knowing I deserve them?
Yes the Lord Jesus has been to God about them. This, then, is the ground on which I can go. There has been perfect atonement for all my sins; Christ has been judged for them. Will God judge us both? No, I go to Him on the ground of atonement, and God can justly meet me in all my sorrow, because Christ's work has been so perfectly done."
(From None but the Hungry Heart edited by Miles Stanford, for the day of June 7, emphasis mine)
Did you read what Darby wrote? Jesus has been to God about our failures for today, even though we should have known better. One might think He wanted us to do some good thing in order to make up for the bad thing we did. But that is telling God we don't quite think it was finished enough! But Jesus said it was totally finished, and so, even if we are tempted to berate ourselves for our failures, we can choose by faith instead to think of how great and merciful a God we have, who foreknew all our failures in advance.
It is not about us trying to be good, it is about Him being formed in us. Over and out. Christ inside of us is our only hope, as Paul wrote in Colossians 1:27:
"To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory." (emphasis mine)
I glorify God when I take Him at His Word instead of wallowing in my own failure. The tricks of our enemy only grow more and more devious as he tries to ensnare us in these last days. But if I keep my eyes on Jesus, I will overcome.
Lord, let me be like the ones described in Revelation 12:11: “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death."