Wednesday, November 2, 2011

God's Grace

Somewhere over the years, I forgot about God's grace.  I had created this ideal person in my mind that I thought I should be...a certain kind of Christian, a certain kind of mother, and a certain kind of wife.  Because I could not live up to these expectations of myself, at times I became depressed and anxious.  There were even times I wondered whether I was truly saved because I couldn't live up to these expectations. Of course, this made me more anxious. Lately, as I have been seeking God, He has been showing me areas of my life that He wants to change, but He is also reminding me that His grace is sufficient.  Years ago, when God was dealing with sin in my life, He led me to Isaiah 30:18, which says, "Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you; And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.  For the Lord is a God of justice; Blessed are all those who wait for Him."  God wants to show us His grace and mercy and He wants to bless us.  Of course, He has set certain standards for us and it is His desire that we follow those standards; but He knows that we can't do it perfectly no matter how much we want to or how hard we try.  When we stumble, He is waiting to show us His grace and mercy.  He is exalted because no one else can take away our sin. No one else has the ability to show grace and mercy the way He does. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Walking in Grace and Seeking God.

Couldn't sleep, so I thought I'd start this blog I've been thinking about doing for a while.  I never quite knew how to start, so I kept putting it off. Tonight, though, I feel the Lord tugging, and am ready to share.  For the last several years, I have had some problems with anxiety.  For much of the time, the reason has alluded me.  I have felt fear, but for no apparent reason.  The Lord has been showing me lately, that my problem really comes down to pride.  I don't want the world to see my flaws, or know that I struggle with my faith.  I hold everything in-- thoughts, feelings, fears, disappointments, and doubts because I am afraid of what people might think.   I am realizing that I've forgotten what being a child of God means--not that I am supposed to do everthing right, but I am supposed to be walking in the grace of God that comes with giving my life to Him.  For as long as I have been dealing with anxiety, I have wanted God to instantaneously heal me of it.  I am starting to understand, though, that He is using it to help me grow.  I am learning to rely on Him more and seek after Him more than I ever have before. One of my favorite verses has always been Jeremiah 29:11, you know the one about God having good plans for our lives.  Recently, I decided to read the whole chapter and discovered that in this passage, God is talking to people who had been taken captive  in Babylon.  He tells them basically to build a life in captivity and to seek peace for the city that they had been taken captive to.  He then goes on to say that after 70 years in captivity, He will deliver them and they will return home; then comes the verse that He has plans to give a future and a hope.  Following that He says "Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart."   After I read this chapter, I realized that God does have great plans for our lives, but we often have to go through difficult things, in order for us to grow so that He can fulfill those plans in us.  The last verse is one that I hope I can learn to live.  I want to know what it means to really seek God with all of my heart.