Joy in Forgiveness of Israel’s (my) Sins
Praise the LORD!
Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever.
It has been just over a year since I made the decision to accept the call of God as an adult. This past year has had more ups and downs than any other year of my life. In my pursuit of God I have moved across the country, met many new people, switched jobs a few times and completed a semester of Bible College. I’ve had many different struggles—some spiritual, some mental, some physical (body, mind, soul) and some all three. To be honest sometimes I hate the struggle and ask myself, “What am I doing here?”
I recently had a very clear call from God to ministry. Immediately after Satan’s wretched arrows begin to sting like hell—literally. I have been under spiritual assault from the enemy for the last month. He is trying to rob my joy and sanity. He is trying every trick in the book to convince me to question the word of God—and often to question the existence of God at all. He tells me I don’t deserve the favor of God and that I am not worthy of God’s grace. And you know what? He’s right. I don’t deserve the favor of God and I am not worthy of God’s grace but that does not mean God’s grace for me does not exist.
Time and time again the Lord has reminded me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Thank God He is strong because there have been times this last month that I have felt weaker than ever before. I have realized that I literally cannot fight any battles alone. I myself am not capable of beating these struggles—but yet I set out on my own again and again. We are very predictable creatures. We never learn from other’s mistakes. We insist on learning from our own experiences. This is our human nature—to be curious and yearning for new experiences. We are not satisfied with complacency even when in a place of peace. I am not satisfied with one little taste of the Lord’s grace. I cannot sit and be fine with the grace I experienced last year, and so I ask again, I seek again, I knock again. I pursue God. The struggle comes when I am pursuing God and thinking I’m doing everything right but not seeing the results I am expecting. God does not work that way. One thing I’ve learned is that if you’re expecting God to work one way then you can almost always expect it to happen differently. This is life—it never goes according to our plans, it goes according to His plan. Peace will be found when we accept this:
Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. –Proverbs 3:5
I recently heard it said, “Don’t hate the struggle; love the struggle because the struggle means you’re His.” As long as we are being used for the furtherance of the Kingdom there is going to be a struggle. There will be a struggle because hell is not happy when we grow up or mature spiritually and get closer to God. Love the struggle! Giving up is easy but giving up is not what we were made for. It’s not who we are. We are His! We are the children of God. Raise your hands and give thanks for though we fail again and again the Father’s love for us endures forever!
So He led them through the depths,
As through the wilderness.
He saved them from the hand of him who hated them,
And redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.