What matters in faith journey is what we do when we fall short. Do we deny our shortcomings and start pretending to be what we are not? Or do we run to Jesus? Why is this so important? Because if we keep from admitting that we are sinners, we harden our hearts. Blessedly this is not the end of the story. God can change our hearts, we just need to ask God for forgive our sins.
And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. (Hezekiel 36:26, NLT)
Mary DeMuth writes in her heartwarming book The Wall Around Your Heart : “We all sin. In light of that, it’s what we do with our sin that really matters. If we hide it behind a façade, we won’t find freedom. If we pretend we’re perfect, we’ll live with deep shame. If we rationalize our sins or deflect them as the fault of the people who hurt us, we’ll never grow, and we won’t experience the freedom of forgiveness. Confessing our sins to Jesus and to others will set us free.”
Jesus taught us to ask God to forgive our sins. It’s not something we are supposed to only do when we are at the end of our rope. Asking forgiveness is meant to be a daily occurrence. It is part of healthy Christian living. Only by confessing sins we can be truly free.
Mary DeMuth reminds us “The hallmark of growing, vibrant, infectious Christians isn’t their ability to abstain from sin. It’s their willingness to let the cross highlight their sin so they can repent, ask forgiveness, and move on in light of Jesus’ outrageous grace. Jesus doesn’t require a sinless people. That’s impossible. But He does ask us to be men and women after His heart, people who are honest enough to admit our failures, who actually need His strength to love others.”
Christian journey is about clinging to Jesus, about realizing our constant need of him and running to the cross. Over and over again. As often as needed. And then, after being empowered by grace, going out to the world again to share God’s love and grace.
Everything changes when we see forgiveness as a daily occurrence.
Only when we are forgiven ourselves, we can forgive others.
Only when we are grace-saturated ourselves, we can extend grace to others.
It’s all about Jesus.
Thank you for teaching us to ask for forgiveness.
Thank you for granting us forgiveness in Jesus’ name.
Thank you for giving us a tender and responsive heart.
Q4U: Is asking forgiveness difficult for you? How does it make you feel?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you practice forgiveness in your everyday life!
Photo courtesy of Justin Heap. Linking up today with Sharing His Beauty, Hear it on Sunday, use it on Monday, Playdates with God, and counting blessings with Ann Voskamp: #1058 Forgiveness is a beautiful thing. #1059 Forgiveness is meant to be a daily occurrence. #1060 Forgiveness is a blessing.
I am part of Mary DeMuth’s launch team for her new bookand I have to say that this book absolutely rocks. It’s not only well written but it is full of uplifting stories that just I can’t capture here on the blog. But make sure to visit the other blogs that are linked up here. They are also blogging through the book. Maybe together we can give a more vivid and accurate picture of the book. Also, make sure to visit this awesome blog where people share how this book has impacted them! You can buy your copy Here or at a bookstore near you. And note that this book will make a perfect gift too! BLESSINGS!