Thursday, July 17, 2008

What Joy (?)

I'm doing a Beth Moore Bible study on faith and the impact in my heart has been HUGE. It's causing me to think and examine my heart and God in an entirely different way and the results are astounding. It's funny; I initally decided to do the Bible study so that I could meet people. Instead, I've met God.

This morning, however, I was getting my daily dose of Stuff Christians Like and I read this. The short version is that we should stop "shining up our scars" to make things look prettier. He discusses the prodigal son in his post and makes a point to say we don't celebrate because things are perfect, but in that we have hope and healing in Jesus Christ.

I thought this was all good. I don't tend to think that I hide my scars. I like to believe that I am a "real" person; what you see, is what you get. But I have my sanitized list of things I am willing to disclose. However, for my study homework, I am supposed to read Romans 4 regularly throughout the duration. This is the chapter discussing Abraham's faith. I stumbled across verses 6-8 and was literally stopped in my tracks.

6 King David spoke of this, describing the happiness of an undeserving sinner who is declared to be righteous:
7 "Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sins are put out of sight.
8 Yes, what joy for those whose sin is no longer counted against them by the Lord."

I began to wonder how and why I could easily skim over the part that infers I should be JOYFUL because my sins and disobedience were no longer counted against me. In theory, this is definitely something to be joyful about. What gives? Maybe it's a sense of entitlement. Maybe I've forgotten how astounded I should be by God's me.

I am starting to realize one of the points of the Bible study...God is bigger than I realize. He's bigger than people because I know hearing about some of the things I've done would turn hair white. And He is able to just easily put it out of sight. He no longer counts that against me. THIS IS HUGE. I can only speak for myself, but it would take Someone absolutely mind-bogglingly powerful to put my past out of sight. And yet, He can and is able to do it. I don't want to miss the significance of that. Some sin can land you in prison, get you socially ostracized forever, ruin your marriage, but they ain't nothin' but a thang to God.

The Tie-In
What if I need to show my scars and disclose more than my approved sin list so that I can attest to God's power and encourage others that He is mighty enough? Involved-in-my-life enough? I want to revel in the joy that is mine because my disobedience is forgiven. I want to properly grieve for my sins, but rejoice in God's mercy. I don't want to take God's mercy or forgiveness lightly. And that might mean examining my scars again with a joyful heart knowing that God is bigger than whatever wickedness I could dream up and implement.


Jeana said...

Hi, Georgia! Thanks for stopping by my blog. Did you find the posts you were looking for, on bringing children in worship? If not, I can send you think links.

Love your blog title! That's very clever.

Jeana, fellow Texan

briansbrainsblog said...

SO, I'm up to Romans 4 in my (totally inappropriately named) exposition tomorrow... wanna guest-host? Collaborate in a point-counterpoint sort of way?