Up until a year ago (almost exactly), my Christian walk looked a bit like this: walk on eggshells, maintain the appearance of perfection, and say what sounds good. When I inevitably failed at all of that, I considered how worthless and unqualified I was, and I then waited for the calamity that I was sure an angry, giant God in the sky would bring my way.
For almost my whole life, I operated under the premise that God was just waiting for me to trip up. And when I did, I was sure destruction and heartache would follow. Maybe you can relate? Maybe you’re still there?
Sure, sin does “bring sorrow” as the infamous (and overused) saying goes. And sure, God cannot look upon our misdeeds and unrighteousness. BUT, God is the absolute epitome of love. Because His son died on the cross, He sees us (if we’re His children) as REDEEMED. Not still stuck in our broken state. Because of Christ, we are WHOLE.
We need to see God as loving. Merciful. Gracious. FORGIVING. Not as I saw Him my entire adult life. When we purposefully seek out His unfailing love and goodness, we willingly serve Him. We devote our lives to Him. We see even discipline as a depiction of His love. We trust His ways, and that they are perfect for us.
Think about your own father. If he loved you with an everlasting love, didn’t you even trust him when you were punished for wrongdoing? If your father ruled with an iron fist, had unrealistic expectations of you, and offered no room for grace, wasn’t it difficult to see/feel his love?
It’s important that we see God as the first example, instead of the second. And here’s a verse that explains it better than I ever could:
“Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger forever, because he DELIGHTETH in mercy. He will turn again, he will have COMPASSION upon us; he will subdue our iniquities, and thou wilt cast ALL their sins into the depths of the sea.” – Micah 7:18-19