Day 2/21: The Guilt Complex

Welcome here! This blog is an “extra blog” being posted daily between January 13 and February 3 to come alongside the 21 Days of Prayer. We are reading through the book of John with the intention of looking very closely at Jesus to know Him really well and love Him a lot as a result!

January 15, 2019

Good morning GOD, my Father,

Everything about You is about LIFE and when I think about this, it is so remarkable! You are LIFE and I can’t help but receive LIFE when I am with You because it is Your Nature to give it. Everything You made pulses with LIFE and this speaks to me about how good You are. GOD, You create LIFE and Your way is to always point to what is LIFE-giving.

This is on my mind today as I think about You, how You are unflawed. You have no sin, no regret, no shady secrets, and nothing to hide. You are Holy, pure and worthy. There is no failure in You. You are my hero, GOD and I look to You!

Thank you GOD, my Father, for showing me The Way out of sin and darkness.

I didn’t even know how deep my problem was, this sin, but now I see it so clearly. I see how sin drove us apart because sin is anti-LIFE in every way.

Some find sin easy to dismiss. Some actually claim to be “sinless” which I find audaciously arrogant. I know I sin and I feel the weight of this. I have tried to get rid of sin on my own which is actually another sin because in that lie hides the lie that “perhaps I can be like GOD” and embody goodness and maybe even perfection. I remember the day, the actual day, I was told that sin would always be an issue for me; that perfection was impossible. I hated finding that out.

If one cannot be perfect, then at least one can appear to be perfect right? You know me, Lord, not only do I sin but then I add sin to sin by trying to appear that I do not. What a maze of sin! I am like Adam and Eve EXACTLY in the way they hid when You were looking for them. Hiding happens in a lot of different ways for us sinners. Sometimes it is just getting away with something because no one else noticed. Sometimes it is telling a story and omitting that one detail. Sometimes it is more blatant then that and it is just a lie un-pure and simple. And…sometimes the sin is invisible because it is only in my thoughts. It’s a wretched condition!

I am thinking of this as I read John 2 and the verse I landed on was 2:24-25

“…for [Jesus] knew all men. He did not need man’s testimony about man, for He knew what was in a man.”

Jesus, you knew people were trying to get away with things but absolutely nothing has been or is hidden from You. I can’t imagine what this is like, to know everything about everyone. All things, every little bit of everything from the womb to the grave. Not one thing hidden. How do You still love us? (John 3:16 is coming…)

I am so embarrassed on the one hand that You see all of me. I am so embarrassed that I have behaved SO badly on SO many occasions whether seen or unseen. I am so embarrassed that I cannot reign myself in to be naturally, and by my own effort, good.

I am so grateful that You have not required this impossible quest. This is the awesome truth about You! When I was ready to hear it, You told me some news straight up. This wasn’t an item for discussion. You identified my condition:

“Teresa, you are MORE SINFUL and flawed than you ever dared to believe…”

Then You told me about how You made a way for me to be right with You. Because of what YOU did on the cross, I could be cleared of the title “sinner” and be a “new creation.” You said,

“Teresa, it is true that you are MORE SINFUL and flawed than you ever dared to believe,” and You added, “Teresa, you are MORE ACCEPTED and MORE LOVED than you ever dared to hope.”*

Your Good News, Your Gospel message, Jesus is that You saw everything about me and You didn’t just suggest a better way to live. You didn’t just give me some good self-help coaching or a shiny disguise to wear. Jesus, You stepped into the mucky ring to SAVE ME. All of my sin and the resulting misery separated me from LIFE. But You Jesus, knowing everything that was in me, fixed the separation between me and GOD. AMAZING, AMAZING!!

When GOD saw my plight, the plight of the world, He “wrote Himself in to our story”* by sending His son Jesus. Jesus, You came to walk with us, talk with us, show us the Father and then You did what we didn’t even ask You to do. You gathered up all our sin, all of my sin upon Yourself, and You killed it through Your death on the cross. And when You rose You invited us to be re-born into a new LIFE. You gave us what we did not naturally have: Your righteousness.

You helped me see this and You invited me to be re-born, re-made, and I said, “yes” to You and this happened.. Though in this present life I still contend with the brokenness of this world and my own, I do not live under a guilt complex. You are walking with me and in me, drawing my heart towards GOD, and constantly showing me the hope for now and the hope for forever; LIFE forever. LIFE!!!!

*** I think what you want me to see something clearly today about how you and I relate: When I meet You, You say who I am in You: You have given me a new title — “My Child” — and I like the sound of this. This makes me COME ALIVE! All You do Jesus, over and over, is give me LIFE. You have clothed me in a new LIFE that I am becoming more comfortable with as time goes on and You are proven right over and over.

Plant this truth deep in my heart Jesus so that I know, know, know this about who I am because of You and what You have done so that I will accept no alternative title and will not listen to any accusation that steals from what You have done for me. You are the LIFE-giver, and I accept LIFE at Your hand.

Is there anyone like You? Not even close.

* Quotes outside of Scripture are by Tim Keller in his book “Center Church”