Friday, April 27, 2012

Stunning News!



Running The Other Way

Let's be honest. I was not looking for God. It's not as if I was walking along one day contemplating God and thinking how I would really like to know Him. I was not planning my days so I could serve God or others. I was not considering all the ways I could love God with all of my heart, mind, soul and strength. In fact, I was not even neutral about God. I wasn't really concerned with "doing the best I could". I would not have kept silent when other's said Jesus is the only way to God...at least not in my heart. While I may not have audibly disagreed, in my soul I was fighting God tooth and nail.

I actually remember attending a Homeowner's Association meeting several years back. We had a board meeting to discuss various issues in our development at the time. The President of the Association was a Christian and at this particular meeting he closed by asking if we had anything we wanted him to pray on our behalf. Although I did not say anything, my heart was inflamed; but not for God. My heart was indignant because of the arrogance of this person to assume any of us there wanted anything to do with his god. I was not neutral - I was running the other way!

I Think Pretty Highly Of Myself

It is tempting to look back at my salvation experience and think about my contribution. Certainly I was good enough for God to give me a second glance. I was not perfect, but I wasn't like other people I knew. And, although I did have that embarrassing moment at the Homeowners Association meeting, that was just one time and I wouldn't say I was mad or anything...just maybe a little annoyed. I thought God was an OK guy...

The truth is I am pretty good at making myself out to be better than I really am! But the Bible has a different view of what my life looked like before God saved me. To paraphrase Ephesians 2:1-5:

Lori, you were dead walking around in your sin.  You were bent on your own selfish ways and insistent on resisting anything to do with God.  Lori, your pride and arrogance kept you on a path of disobedience.  You looked for ways to carry out evil and used your own desires of your body and of your mind to direct all of your decisions and actions.  You believed you were good because you weren't as bad as others.  Your pride and arrogance not only made you feel better but it also caused you to pity others and see them as inferior.  Lori, you were passionate about one thing only - you.


But God 

This is the crazy part. While I was in this mess I wasn't thinking it was bad! I was headed for destruction and didn't know it. Continuing the paraphrase:


But God possessed so much love for you Lori, that it was spilling over.  It was ceaseless and all that love for you was poured out in infinite amounts of mercy.  While you were running around denying God and bent on your own agenda; while your were mocking Him and doing everything possible to resist Him, while you were dying in all of your rebellion, He came to you.  He looked at you.  He loved you and forgave you for all of your stubbornness.  So though you were dead [unable to save yourself] He saved you and made you alive and gave you a Brother, namely Jesus. And even when you are still tempted to think you had any part of this rescue mission - God still loves you.  Lori, it is by grace you have been saved.

As I read this stunning good news this morning I could not help but be gripped once again by the unbelievable and endless mercy of God who came down and set His sights on me.   May this freely given, unearned gift never cease to be both dazzling and devastating...








And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved. 
~Ephesians 2:1-5



8 comments:

  1. Lori, thank you for sharing your heart and being transparent. So grateful that I know my precious Savior and the Grace He extends! This post is truly inspiring. Blessings.

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  2. Thank you Lori for being transparent and sharing your heart. This post was very inspiring. So glad to have a Savior who extends Grace. Blessings.

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  3. Hi there Just Be Real! Thanks for your comment and encouragement. Every day I am tempted to take credit for what only God can do. His word brings me back to the truth of who I am and who He is!
    Blessings, friend,
    Lori

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  4. All I can say to this is AMEN!!!! I have many homestories, too, my friend. :)

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  5. Hey Tammy! Thanks for visiting. What Christ has done for us is stunning - Tullian nailed it yesterday! Have a great day!

    Blessings,
    Lori

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  6. I remember saying "im not as bad as other people i am good " Then in God's infinite mercey he saved me . He saved me while i was a sinner.I dont even know what happened and that is God's amazing Grace.I rest in the fact that the God of this universe is sovereign over all.
    I am glad we do not choose God He chooses us.We love Him because he loved us first.

    Many blessings,
    Lucy

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    1. Preach it Lucy!

      I find that in my ongoing "mess of me" I still say in my heart "I'm not as bad as others"! It's so easy for me to justify my words and actions while looking down on someone else. So I cry out with Paul "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!"

      Thanks for stopping by :)

      Blessings,
      Lori

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    2. Amen sister! This is a great site!

      Blessings,
      Lucy

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