Thursday, April 28, 2011

Post-Easter Challenge 4 {Confession}

Challenge 4

Let me be honest. I have to be… I only completed one of the Easter challenges, which I myself created. I bet you can guess which one it was. Yep, that’s right, I read the Easter story. I had wonderful plans to complete the other two, but opportunities passed, people traipsed by & I left the blessed words unsaid. I failed & felt the pain of the thing I’d done – or not done. My sinful imperfection made me question who I was in Christ… made me feel like a bitter disappointment to my Lord. Certainly I fall short & sin daily, but I had purposefully put these challenges out there for not only myself, but for all of you…& then, I, the creator of the very scheme failed. I could have been instrumental in bringing someone to hear the message of Christ this Easter, which in turn could have changed an eternity, & dominoed from there.

Listen to some of the words of the song my heavenly Daddy placed on my car radio after the fact – when my failure was fresh & stinging…

I wasted a rescue
Abandoned the mission
I've failed by my own hand
And watched it all go wrong
You said You could save me
That I couldn't save myself
You said that You loved me
No matter what I've done

When the light is gone
And life is just a dare we take
Still the fight goes on
To give my heart away

And it's out of my hands
It was from the start
In light of what You've done for me…

We're bent by our own plans
To keep us in the dark
And I act like an orphan
Forget that You found me
But You came like a whisper
And saved me with a spark…

And it's out of my hands
It was from the start
In light of what You've done for me
-Out of My Hands by Jars of Clay

It’s funny, since the New Year I’ve been on a Bible reading plan, & on Easter Sunday evening, I sat, Bible on lap - feeling low I turned to the section for that day. It was Romans chapters 7 & 8, & when I started reading I didn’t know what I was getting into. It turns out it was the perfect place for a sinner like me to go.  Here’s some of what I found:

You know when you feel like you should do something, but you let the opportunity pass - & then you turn around & do the things you don’t won’t to do that make you feel like a big let down mess? You’re not alone…
Paul speaking: “For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do--this I keep on doing.” –Romans 7:19 NIV

Doing the things we hate & not the good things that we want, make us feel like horrible ugly flops, but Christ died to make us 'horrible ugly flops' clean & beautiful from all of these things.
“What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!” –Romans 7:24-25

You know that feeling of failure & soul angst? It’s not to remain.  We who are in the Savior are not 'orphans'…
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
-Romans 8:1 NIV

I know I won't be finished with this challenge called 'life' until He calls me home.  It will be a challenge, but Christ Jesus has won the final victory. Let’s begin again, knowing that we will fail at times, but seeking & striving beyond our frail humanity, because of the power of Christ in us & how He makes us brand new.

"For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus." -Philippians 1:6 NASB


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