Happy FriYAY Freebies,
The week before last, I promised to conclude the "Forgiven" blog I posted a week prior. But we got derailed with Roe v Wade news, so I had to blog about that. This week I'm getting us back on track. If you haven't read Jesus pro-life & pro-choice (roe v wade blog) or Forgiven part one, click the hyperlinks to catch up.
Forgiven part one aligns with a short video I posted on Instagram (a must-see)!
In short, sis, you are forgiven!
Please repeat after me: I am FORGIVEN!
Now, doesn't that feel good?
It should feel good, especially if you are a follower of Christ. Here's the caveat, as followers of Christ, our lives should mirror Him, and as long as we stay connected (to Him) and repent of our sins, we are forgiven (always).
Sure, we won't get everything right. We may even find ourselves repenting several times because, honestly, we can't mirror Him on our own. We must do it with him, and knowing that He walks with us every step is comforting. He wants us to live holy and in peace.
God's certainly not waiting for us to slip so he can pull the plug and punish us. Please don't allow anything to make you think differently.
And, any thought, idea, or word contrary to His desire for us to win is of the enemy. Satan is the one with plans to keep us looking backward and wallowing in a blanket of shame. As a matter of fact, one of his go-to tricks is to add confusion to our hearts and minds. Satan wants us to feel like we're not forgiven.
Romans 8:1 tells us that there is NOW no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, and again sis, if you're a follower of Jesus, this means you, too. There is no condemnation for you either.
Let's break down what condemnation means. According to Websters, condemnation is declared to be reprehensible, wrong, or evil. It's also described as pronounced guilty, sentenced to punishment, and declared unfit for use.
2022 translation: it means feeling constant shame, embarrassment, guilt, and not being good enough (unworthy).
Do you believe God believes this about you? Nope! These are all methods in which satan strives to make us feel. You know that nagging voice that says, "you might as well," or "God is tired of you?" that's satan.
So, you've fallen short again, maybe you weren't as integral, or you let a little lie go on too long.
Whatever your thing is, as long as you surrender it to Jesus, avoid and renounce it, he forgives you.
Don't let guilt keep you hiding, shrinking back in shame, and avoiding prayer because you think God is upset with you.
Consider Peter, a disciple of Jesus, one of Jesus' right-hand men. When they arrested Jesus, Peter pretended he didn't know Jesus and lied about it three times. Guess what? Jesus forgave him, and Peter had to let go to move on. Peter had to accept forgiveness to step into his greatness.
The greatest act of forgiveness is forgiving ourselves.
What if Peter stayed stuck in the past, allowing his shame to rob him of his confidence. We'd be missing a large portion of the bible without Peter. You see, the Lord had plans for Peter that didn't include drowning in something God forgot and forgave. The same is for you.
(read more about Peter denying Christ here)
Romans 8:2-9 goes on to say (Coach Rahk Translation)
We are no longer condemned because we are made clean and new through Jesus' death and resurrection. Jesus' presence in our life outweighs any laws or desires of the flesh. When we are in a relationship and connected to Jesus, we are covered by the Spirit of God. And, when we are disconnected from Jesus, we operate in the spirit of our flesh (our sinful nature).
Our flesh enjoys sin and works against the God in us. Sin loves more sin, and it loves to keep us wanting more. And when our minds are set on sin, it's a setup for death. I talked a bit about this tug of war here.
But, keeping our minds connected to the Spirit of God (through Jesus), we are more inclined to desire and have an appetite for the good (God) things. You know how you start eating healthy for two weeks, and your body then craves all the good stuff.
It's kinda like that; the more we plug into the Spirit (eat the good stuff), we find peace and crave it, but the more we sin and stay in our comfy ruts, we desire that more.
Staying in our comfy ruts is when we're inclined to live by the flesh (our sin), and we find ourselves saying "this is the last time" or reasoning why "just a lil mo' won't hurt.
Sis, it's a trap to keep us in the sin cycle.
But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. 11, And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.
The moral of the story is to know that you are FORGIVEN and to stay connected to Jesus so that you'll be stronger when sin and temptation come. While we are forgiven, forgiveness is not a pass to live a crappy and self-serving life. We shouldn't abuse God's grace or use repentance like a get-out-of-jail-free card.
Relationships don't work like that. You can't name a time that you enjoyed being taken for granted neither can God.
Final thoughts (all this to say), you are forgiven, don't allow the enemy to keep you looking behind. When you fall, get up, repent, ask Jesus for help, and to keep going. You've got this!
Until next time,
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