Wednesday, July 7, 2010

From Regret to Redemption....

"Remember my affliction and bitterness...My soul still remembers and sinks within me."
-Lamentations 3:19-20

How often have I immersed myself in immobilizing ruminations of time gone by, ruefully remembering mistakes made, opportunities lost, roads not traveled...My strength is slowly sapped, parched in the desert of this paralyzing pastime.

My attempt to re-construct the flimsy framework of forgotten sins,  to piece together the pick-up sticks of my past proves to be an excercise in futility, for unless the Lord builds the house I labor in vain.  God does not dwell on antiquity, He does not put His shoulder to the wheel of our self-reproach, He is not building monuments to our mis-steps and neither should we.

God does not take part in preserving our past, He is not interested in the relics of our wrong-doing.  He died an agonizing death to forever form a division between then and now, to forge the way from failure to forgiveness, to secure safe passage from sin to salvation, and to rebuild the road from regret to redemption.

"This I recall to mind, therefore I have hope: Through the LORD's mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not.  They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness."
-Lamentations 3:21-23

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  1. Thank you for this, Liz. God is using you to minister to me at this moment.

  2. And thank goodness for THAT, because He only knows I need it!

    I love that verse :) Thanks, Liz/Hindsfeet!

  3. I've always wondered about this with distress at times - why does God speak of us all facing a judgement day after death where we'll have to make an account of our sins, if He forgives us of those sins? That's troubling to me, because my sins are many and some are named in scripture as not being able to make it into heaven. I know it's all in context, but still. It troubles me from time to time.

  4. Hi Linda...

    I don't know if this will be a comfort to you, but, here's the deal as I understand it...yes, all those things you mentioned are true and will happen...There is a judgement, and it does seem contradictory to what we read about grace and redemption.

    Here's where we start. The Word is true, there is no error or contradiction in it. So if there is an apparent contradiction, it's an invitation to dig deeper and ask for God's wisdom and light to clarify the apparent discrepancy.

    Yes, there is a judgement. But here's the kicker. We read in Revelations 13:8 a great mystery, that Jesus, the one who died in our place and took our judgement and penalty on Himself, was crucified, slain *before the foundation of the world*. His sacrifice on our behalf is outside of and encompasses time and space, and yes, even judgement day. The cross is the backdrop of our existence, past, present, and yeah, future, at the judgement. The cross is there too. Will those sins be judged? Sure, it says they will, but the cross will be there to take your place and fulfill all righteousness.

    Your sins are as good as blotted out, Linda, though the judgement has not taken place yet because Jesus' sacrifice is outside of time, there, always.

    On top of this, Linda, you have the witness of the Holy Spirit in you, assuring you that you are a daughter of God, it's a done deal....I know it when I interact with you, like Mary and Elizabeth, there's that witness in my spirit that tells me you are His.

    And Linda, ya know, God's grace, it's huge, it's bigger than any mental box we can put it in to understand it.....You are covered, more than covered. Look at all the times in the bible where Jesus "bent the rules" in favor of mercy and grace...The "rules", the sacred Torah, said that the woman caught in adultery must be put to death, but Jesus is Lord over everything, even His own rules....He knew of a higher "rule", mercy, he knew that though his crucifixion had not manifested on earth yet in an actual act, it was a done deal "before the foundations of the earth" and He chose to cover this woman and give her a new start....."Mercy triumphs over judgement", Linda, always remember that. And put your fears finally to rest.

    Peace and Grace from our Father, my dear friend,

  5. Liz,
    Thank you so very much. ♥ I will read this again and again and ponder it until it finally sinks in. Yes, this helps tremendously. Thank you.


  6. Oh wow. "Trying to piece together the pic up sticks of my past"! What a great picture of the mental gymnastics I've been doing. Trying to sort out....endlessly sort out...details. Oh I'm so encouraged to read this! And, yes, mercy trumps so so SO thankful for the beautiful reminder. As usual, your post is like heaven blowing me a kiss:) -Jennifer

  7. Liz,
    Thank you for your other comments last night as well - so beautiful I was moved to tears with the beautiful quotes you shared.

    Hope you have a blessed weekend.
    We are traveling again...
    Love & blessings,

  8. As one who often immerses herself "in immobilizing ruminations of time gone by" I am so glad your blog fell into my lap...this post struck such a cord with me and your words are like honey to my soul. How I needed this! I am also touched by your shared comments with Linda... beautiful and of the Holy Spirit. Your blog is now bookmarked and will be eagerly anticipated by me and shared with my friends and family. Thank you for sharing your devotions journey. God is so good! Amen!

  9. Hi Janet : ) So thrilled to "share the journey" with such wonderful traveling companions....Thanks for your encouragement, looking forward to popping over to your site too : )

    peace Girlfriend,