Pick up Your Cross

Courtesy posting by my boomerang gal and all-time AWESOME sister – I couldn’t have written it better!

IMG_0224Today as I sit drinking my coffee and reflecting today is Good Friday and what that means to me as a Christian, I see the crosses which decorate a wall in our living room. I wonder what a non-Christian thinks when they see those crosses and then I thought about what it should mean to me. It should be a reminder as a Christian that I die daily to myself (my selfish thoughts and wants) to follow a risen Savior who died for my sins. And truthfully, I fail….again and again. I chastise myself, but I press on.

For I’m encouraged to pick up His cross again because I serve a risen Christ who is loving and forgiving. I am an imperfect person following a perfect loving Christ striving to be more like Him.

Thank you Jesus for dying on the cross for my sins!

 

The Trouble With Double Standards

God has been pouring out blessing upon blessing in my life and yet, I find myself dwelling on the impact past sins may have on the future.

We’ve all sinned, right?  Granted, in our minds some may seem much larger than others – some with longer standing consequences, but they’re sins all the same.

There is no sliding sin scale – a sin is a sin – plain and simple.

Do you ever find yourself being your own worst critic?  Having impossible standards?  Allowing yourself to be haunted by those past mistakes?

If so, you’re not alone.  If so, there’s hope. But it requires a shift.  It requires letting go of those sins.

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to  them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

“As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12

God tells me He is faithful – He tells me He will forgive me – He tells me He will cleanse me – He tells me He will work ALL things together for good.  When I stumble and follow with repentance, why then do I hold onto that mistake for dear life?

It is so easy for me to look at a person and see who they are – the good and the bad.  I can easily see how God takes a situation and turns it into something wonderful. And I completely believe He forgives those who repent of their sins.

And since we all know God is not a respecter of persons, why then do I continue to dig up my past mistakes?  I’m like a dog with his favorite bone – I can’t seem to let go.  God has forgiven me – it’s gone – it’s erased!  So why then, do I readily let go of others’ mistakes and yet hold on to mine?

The trouble with this double standard is that it’s almost as if I’ve decided what sins get forgiven – and it’s a mindset that can hold me back from fully moving forward into what God has in store for me – a mindset the enemy thrives on.

How exactly do I accept God’s grace and forgiveness? Daily.  Each time the enemy stirs up those feelings of guilt I must be reminded God removed those transgressions – not temporarily – He removed them permanently.  And I use the tools He gives me to reinforce His faithfulness –  daily prayers of thanksgiving, affirmations standing on His promises, and most importantly, leaning into Him and resting in His love.

1Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: 2By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; 4And patience, experience; and experience, hope: 5And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.” Romans 5:1-5