Hope in God. David proclaims what I would do well to remember – that even if everything around me gives way, even if evil and darkness rule my life, there is still hope because God is unchangeable and steady and unshakeable, “His grace is the ground for unshaken hope” (Spurgeon). Even if you are in a place where you don’t feel God’s love, it does not mean that He is not present. Even if the darkness does not lift, “the darkness is not dark to him” and there is still hope.
Our Father does not look for moral competency – for crossed t’s and dotted i’s and straight-line walking. Instead He takes the sin and the shame, He lovingly deals with them on the cross, and He promises to walk with us as we seek to follow Him and know Him more. His grace. It saves and sustains. It redeems and it reminds. It is forever and it’s also right now. In every moment, over and over and over. It is available in abundance.
It seems like the enemy has tirelessly worked to bring me low and make me believe lies. And I confess, I’ve allowed him to bring me low and I’ve believed the lies. But like firm ground underfoot that can’t be seen through the thickness of low-settled fog, with every step I have been able to rest firmly in the knowledge that He is sure and steadfast.
What do you do when you so heavily feel the weight of the brokenness of the world bearing down on you? When you are so overwhelmed with the pain caused by sin that you feel suffocated? When your heart aches with the hurt and grief of the people around you? How do you let it more deeply root yourself in the goodness and love and sovereignty of the Lord?
I've examined my life more deeply, I've realized that sometimes the way I live and the things I feel don't necessarily line up with the things I say I believe to be true about God. The fear and guilt and insecurity and doubt that are almost daily present in my life reveal to me that I am not always believing.
...regardless of what is happening in my life [or my feeling that nothing is happening in my life], God is still on His throne. So even when I don’t know what is ahead I can rest in his sovereignty, cling to His character, and walk daily in obedience. I can stop seeking for direction or clarity and start seeking to live a life of abandon right where I am to the glory of God. I can find rest in who God is...
Find pleasure in Me. Delight in Me as I delight in you. Be satisfied in Me and let your delight in Me overflow in praise. Rest in My love. It is perfect. It is unfailing. It is unconditional. It is a love that will not let you go. And it is enough.
Despite how we fail and choose other things to love, God continues to chooses to love us. His love is incredible. And then he commands us to "love one another as I have loved you." But how? I can scarcely grasp His love for me, much less imitate it myself! And yet He gives us the key to doing so...
As humans we naturally think that we are so self sufficient and that our faith is something we can manufacture on our own. But it’s not! And praise the Lord for that because there’s no way we can sustain our faith on our own. I try so hard to figure out the secret to resting and trusting the Lord and it’s so simple...
Saving grace: ascribed to God, grace is his voluntary, unrestrained, unmerited favor toward guilty sinners, granting them justification and life instead of the penalty of death, which they deserve Reading through this definition I am overwhelmed and humbled. Grace. Without restraint. Grace. Excessive and Abundant. Grace. Life and hope offered to vile and wretched sinners.
But God loves you…just because he loves you. Not because of you, not because of your righteousness, your personality, your upstanding morals, or your character. He loves you despite your sin and even in the midst of your unfaithfulness. We are so undeserving. It is such a beautiful love! And such a wonderful Lover.
There is a type of love that arises in response to the beauty, value and other commendable qualities of its recipient. Grace is a different kind of love, one that exists although there is nothing commendable in the recipient. Grace only functions as such if its objects are the undeserving and the unable - those who have absolutely nothing to recommend them as a candidate for God's favor.