Did you know that God took me from being an “as is” woman who was nothing but angry, bitter, and unforgiving, and turned me into one who loves more freely, forgives more easily, and embraces the messes of life with a whole lot more grace?
Oh yes, He transformed me from the inside out, but His work is not yet done.
I still mess up and fall into the ways that once marked my normal . . . screaming over spilt milk, hollering about pig stye bedrooms, pitching fits over another change in the schedule. But when I become a hot-mess now, it's because I'm giving into my flesh, and that gives way to sin. In the past, my sin was triggered so often by all that was stored up in my heart. I didn't know I need to unload it all before the Lord, and honestly, it was too daunting of a process to undertake on my own.
With the help of a Christian counselor, I found the courage and space to process out loud the pain stored up from a life-time ago -- from a legacy of abuse, shame over my promiscuous and rebellious teen and college years, and even present-day guilt over not being the mom or wife I thought I should be as I battled with insecurity, anger, and so much more.
The root problem wasn't so much in what I endured and experienced as much as it was in how I buried it deep in my heart.
In shame and guilt and much regret, false beliefs were formed about my identity in Christ and God's perspective. I couldn't erase the past, but I didn't know how to embrace God's forgiveness and grace nor even extend that to others. So when I did sin in my anger, I didn't know what to do about. I just kept on feeling worse and sinning more, until the Lord graciously revealed to me the need to move forward with a new identity in Christ and the truth as my daily focus.
When God gets into our thinking, He changes our living (2 Corinthians 10:5, Romans 12:2).
Embracing His Word as truth, in every situation past and present, is how I moved from "as is" and into embracing my life today as a forgiven and redeemed child of God. Yes, in Christ, we are new creations (2 Corinthians 5:17). That is our identity. So shouldn't we live as such?
Oh, I’m still a work in progress — as long I am in the land of the living, there will be issues to work through. My temper flairs up when I am tired and hungry, overwhelmed and triggered by events. But now, instead of running from God, I know I need to run too Him faster than ever before. We don't need to handle our issues alone. We don't need to hide from God. His kindness is such that grace and forgiveness always awaits us. Because, God, who began a good work in us desires to bring it to completion, always (Philippians 1:6).
He's not finished with us yet!
So will you give Him full access to your heart and mind? Will you lay your past at the foot of the cross and receive His grace and forgiveness in every part of your story? Will you embrace your new identity found in the Savior's love, and live as the broken-but-redeemed to tell the story that gives Him glory?
I hope so. I pray so.
Journeying with you,
P.S. If you're ready to embrace the journey of transformation, this course is a great source of inspiration and focus.