Grace for Today

Tonight~ I screwed up.  No, I didn’t yell at anyone or break the law.  I didn’t burn supper or forget to make an important call.  I didn’t lash out at anyone or withhold grace.  No, what I did was the thing I always do.  I went against what I knew to be right and true.  I went against the Spirit that lives within in favour of the flesh on the outside.  I succumbed to fear and doubt~ which is in direct opposition to faith.  I had a “woe is me” moment.  A tirade of sorts in my heart and mind against God’s promises for me and my family.  Maybe it’s fatigue.  Maybe it’s frustration…or maybe it’s just sin.

Romans 7 pretty much sums it up. (The Message version):

14-16I can anticipate the response that is coming: “I know that all God’s commands are spiritual, but I’m not. Isn’t this also your experience?” Yes. I’m full of myself—after all, I’ve spent a long time in sin’s prison. What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise. So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s command is necessary.

17-20But I need something more! For if I know the law but still can’t keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help! I realize that I don’t have what it takes. I can will it, but I can’t do it. I decide to do good, but I don’t really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. My decisions, such as they are, don’t result in actions. Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time.

21-23It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge.

24I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question?

25The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.

So, where do I go from here?   Back to my knees.  Back to the classroom of grace and mercy.  I’m going to fall, I’m going to mess up and I’m going to doubt.  What I’m not going to do is give in.  I still believe that God has a GOOD plan for our family~ I just can’t see it all coming together just yet.  

It is in these tough days and nights that I am easily distracted and discouraged. What gives me hope is that it’s always darkest before the dawn.  Isn’t that true? It really is.  Storms are always followed by amazing sunsets.  Crying your eyes out usually brings the best sleep ever.  And falling down means the only way to go is up.  This gives me hope.  And today, hope is good enough. Because today’s hope is tomorrow’s promise. Thank God for tomorrows!!

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