Have I Said All This Before??

I always feel kind of bad when I don't do nice, fluffy posts about something funny the kids have done or the wonderful and sweet love of God. But it seems that, so often, it's heavy things that are on my heart. Not heavy as in bad heavy (okay, sometimes they're bad heavy) but heavy in the sense of the holy and just side of God that we so easily brush aside. We're all about some love. Not so much with the whole holiness thing.

If you'd like a quick cute kid story before you zip out, though, here's one. At least, I thought it was cute. You might think it's completely lame and boring.

So, I haven't had much of a voice the past few days. As in, I'm sick, I guess. I stayed home from church last night and relaxed on the couch and ate chocolate did some ironing and straightening up since I wasn't going to be much of a storyteller at AWANA. When Lukey came in, he ran to me, gave me a hug, and asked, "Did your voice turn up yet?" Later on, he got right in my face and asked, in a very serious voice and with a concerned look, "Why did you get sick, my dear?" Oh, that boy is so lovable.

Okay, so back to serious stuff. (If you're leaving now, hopefully I'll catch ya later. :) ) In my quest for humility, God continues to reveal the depth of my sin and the infinity of His holiness. Humility begins in seeing myself as a helpless, hopeless sinner before a completely holy, righteous, pure, "other" God. Without that humility and understanding of how things really stand, I cannot grasp the amazing measure of His grace. Until we understand exactly what we've been forgiven for, we cannot appreciate fully the amount of forgiveness we've been shown.

It is a common thing these days for us to question the justice and goodness of God. We do it at every turn. Something doesn't go our way and we turn with a defiant attitude and say, "Really, God?" Someone who's had nothing but tough breaks for as long as we remember has one more bad thing added to the list, and we ask, "God, how could you?" We suffer injustice because of someone else's sin, and we wonder, "How could God expect me to forgive that? Didn't you see what she did?" We read of someone like the dude who stuck his hand out to steady the Ark of the Covenant in the Old Testament and was immediately struck dead, and we quickly say, in our most offended voice, "God, wasn't that a bit much? Lay off the strict judgment a little!"

And the thing is, we see nothing wrong with our response. It's completely understandable. It's God who is being unreasonable, right? Um, that'd be a big NO!

How many of us consider the Old Testament to be a record of God's great mercy and grace toward men? For most of my life, I did not. More recently, though, He is showing me over and over again how we all deserve so much worse than what He's offered us. He continually offers mercy and grace to people in the OT, but they continually throw the offer back in His face. He shows mercy and patience over and over and over and over. He warns them of the consequences of His actions over and over and over and over. And they keep on sinning over and over and over and over.

From the moment we take a breath. From the moment of our first sin. From the moment we first assert our will over the will of the Almighty, we deserve death. We were given the gift of life. We were given the chance to show the world the glory of God. And we threw it in His face.

We continually say, with each sin we commit, "I would make a better God than you. I do not care for your ideas or your ways. I'll choose my own path since you are so incompetent at being the Ruler of the Universe. Please get up off that throne because I'll be taking that seat now."

(I feel like I've written all of this before. If I have, I must be continually reminded of it myself and you are having to endure it with me! Sorry! In fact, I just searched recent entries to be sure, but I can't find where I've actually posted this. I think I might be a tad crazy. Not shocking to you, I know.)

When my kids come to me with the "It's not fair" routine, my response usually goes something like, "You know what's fair? Hell." Yes, I'm sweet like that. But it's true! And I think sometimes (or a lot of the time) we need to be reminded of what's really fair. We ask all the time if God's being fair and the answer is, "NO." He's being merciful and gracious if you're still breathing, because you are a sinner who deserves death. He laid out the criteria from the beginning. You sin. You die. But then we did sin, and we didn't die. At least, not right away. But it's coming.

Really, any kindness the Lord shows us is His grace. We don't deserve it, though, in our great pride, we think we do. Least of all, we did not deserve the one not-so-just thing God did. He killed His own sinless Son for us. Why don't we question His fairness on that one? Jesus didn't, and He had every right to. But He responded with humility, trusting that the Father's plan was the right plan. The one unfair thing God did and we seem perfectly fine with it. In fact, we still question His love for us and for mankind on a regular basis, though He went pretty far out of His way to prove it. He killed an innocent man...for who? A bunch of lying, thieving, selfish murderers. Seems kind of unfair.

Okay, my rant is done. All of this leads to this fact: God is just. He is holy. He is perfect. And He is full to overflowing with grace and mercy and patience and love toward us, but the offer will not stand forever. It's time we fall on our face, as Isaiah did, and recognize our unworthiness.

But it doesn't end there. When we do that, He picks us up, cleanses us (though we don't deserve it), and gives us a new life of freedom to serve Him. He gives us another chance at that whole refecting His glory business. This is where I falter. I become afraid at what that will entail, and I want to shrink back in fear. But I cannot. That would be pride, and I am aiming for humility. So my prayer becomes, "Lord, do in me what it takes to make me so full of You, so in love with You, so trusting of You that I give myself to you completely. Let Amy die to her pride and let Christ live in me, for your glory." I'm not there yet but I'm looking toward the prize.


  1. Wow this is so true! Definitely something I needed to read. Love your blog by the way :-)


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