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Monday, January 23, 2012

Corrected Yet Hopeful!

As the Lord recently made me aware of a needed correction in my life, I was caught up short by realizing the change in my reaction from years ago. I didn't feel condemned. I didn't feel any contempt from God. There wasn't any hopelessness. In the past, I would have "heard" God say something like, "See? There's another thing you're bad at! You'll never change!"

This time there was nothing close to that! That was amazing to me. So different from the past. Now I can face my sin and repent in peace. The difference?

Now I'm convinced that instead of contempt from God, His correction--even rebuke--is His loving act. He is looking at me with love saying, "This correction is for your good. Yes, I know you are a sinner and you sin. That is your nature. I didn't create you that way, only the ability to choose. But I don't shame you for that. I want to work in your life. I'm wooing you back to me because your disobedience separates you from me. Come to me. Recognize your sin. Let me forgive you and restore you to fellowship with me. I love you!"

What a relief! There is hope. There is life. There is power to change.

He has not withdrawn His love, only revealed it through His concern for my welfare and good.

Forgive me for quoting this passage again but it's so essential for us to believe God's promise when we fail:

30 “If his sons forsake my law
and do not follow my statutes,
31 if they violate my decrees
and fail to keep my commands,
32 I will punish their sin with the rod,
their iniquity with flogging;
33 but I will not take my love from him,
nor will I ever betray my faithfulness. (Psalm 89:30-33 NIV).

The reason God woos you through His correction rather than shame you is that His faithfulness is a reflection of who He is: love! To do anything other than woo you is to go against who He is--and that is impossible. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow.

So the next time you feel shamed or hopeless or discouraged or helpless because of your sin, claim the truth: it's all about God's faithfulness, not your sin. He welcomes you back through your repentance and has not rejected you. What joy!

There is hope! Don't go by your feelings and old thought patterns. Believe the truth.

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