Thursday, April 28, 2011
It is all about Him
I grew up in a traditional church that was confusing in what I learned. I heard the message of the gospel...I was taught that you are saved by faith, but then I also heard you have to do this and that. I was taught the law. I grew up dressing a certain way, living by this code of conduct set out before me in order to insure God loved and accepted me. For a long time I even questioned if I went to college and study to be a youth pastor in order to earn something from God...like how could God not love me I am in ministry!. My whole life was obsessed with trying to perform well enough and in my twenties I was burnt out and gave up! I quit trying and I quit seeking God. I didn't do anything extreme, I was just tired of trying to be good enough.
In my thirties I began to seek some counseling for some issues and ended up in a Christian Discipleship Counseling program. It was then that I began to understand the grace of God, the concept of His life exchanged for mine, of letting Him live through me...I began to see that nothing I could do was going to change God's love for me, but on some levels I still struggled with the legalistic stuff I grew up with and I couldn't just negate obedience to the Word...which is NOT the message of grace...in time I came to understand that God loves me simply because I am His child, like I love my kids. He loves me no matter what, but just like we have rules and expectations for our children, God has rules and expectation for His. None of these will save us, none of them will change His love for us.
We choose to obey His laws, to serve Him not out of a need to justify ourselves before Him, but out of our love and commitment to Him! Just like we tend to want to bless our children when they are doing all we expect or trying to...God wants to bless us as we seek to honor Him!!
Our salvation is based on what God did by sending His Son to die for us. Our faith in that is all that is required....everything else is just us loving God and wanting to honor Him with our lives.
Romans 28, 31 (Amplified Bible)
For we hold that a man is justified and made upright by faith independent of and distinctly apart from good deeds (works of the Law). [The observance of the Law has nothing to do with justification.]Do we then by [this] faith make the Law of no effect, overthrow it or make it a dead letter? Certainly not! On the contrary, we confirm and establish and uphold the Law.