Demi sat up on her bed. Tired and sweating, she felt she needed a break. Her eyes were drowsy and her heart was heavy. She dropped her phone on the floor right next to her bed. She figured she’d pick it up later on or even better, she’d step on it when she woke up in the morning. That way she wouldn’t need to be reminded of that night’s events.
This wasn’t the first time this was happening and she was quite sure it won’t be the last. She wanted to get on her knees and talk. But she wasn’t sure she even knew what to say anymore. Was it going to be the same words she spoke into the air three weeks ago, or the ones she declared at the altar six months ago.
You see with her, it was always a back and forth movement. One week in, the next few out. Sometimes the guilt would settle in, other times, she’d feel absoltely fine, like nothing was wrong at all. But those were the times that scared her the most. Where was her conscience? Was she still okay? As much as she liked the ease that came with not feeling guilty, the silence that flowed with the aftermath of her actions scared her. Maybe her guts weren’t working anymore. But that’s not true. They were working, or at least they were an hour ago.
Demi sighed and curled into a little ball on her bed. Today was going to be one of them guilt filled days.
She picked up the Bible that lay on her bedside table and dusted the surface. It hadn’t really been a while but the harmattan that year hadn’t been so wonderful.
She flipped to one of her favourite books of the Bible, Romans chapter 7. She read it over and over again, like she had done in the past and each time there was something that stuck out.
21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.
Demi smiled pathetically to herself. This had been her life lately. So she continued reading.
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature[d] a slave to the law of sin.
Demi opened the next page of her book that led to chapter 8. The redemption page was what she liked to call it.
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you[a] free from the law of sin and death.
These words brought Demi to tears. She wanted to talk to Daddy. Tell Him she was sorry, that she wouldn’t slide back again. But even she knew she was just deceiving herself. She didn’t want to lie and take His love for granted, but in reality, she actually wanted to get things right. So He’d be happy with her again. And here this verse was saying, that there is no condemnation for those in Christ. She wasn’t even sure if she was in Christ.
She began to cry a bit more now. She had heard from different sources that tears didn’t move God. But at this point, she was tired of going back. She wanted to experience His love. But she felt so far away.
So many times, we find ourselves struggling to do what is right and failing nearly every time. Most times, we struggle to let go of people, habits, feelings that aren’t necessarily good for us. And we know they aren’t so great, but we accommodate them.
And then to justify our actions we tell ourselves, ‘Well God wouldn’t have brought him into my life if he was so bad for me.’ or sometimes we say, ‘Well God made me and these feelings, I might as well put them to use.’
But most times, we forget that God did not design us to live by feelings. Living by feelings is thinking with your heart and not with your head. According to Judah Smith, living by feelings dehumanizes you and you end up living by instinct.This is because, each time we follow our emotions, we make use of irrational thinking that brings about animalistic behaviour. So yes, thinking by instinct is animalistic. It’s what gets us to do what we swore to ourselves years ago, we wouldn’t do. It gets us to open up the doors God has already shut in our lives.
But you know what? There is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. What does this mean?
It means because of our position in Christ, condemnation is no longer part of the equation of our existence.
So yes, we’ll make mistakes. Yes, we’ll fall back a bit. We might even go a year without Church or fellowship, or whatever it is people do nowadays. But you know what? God’s love for us is 360. Remember the story of the prodigal son? How the father wrapped his arms around the son and embraced him even after all the boy had done? Yep. That’s God’s love.
Think of things this way. You get free VIP passes to any concert of your choice. All access, No questions asked. But when you get there, you only stay in the stands where all the regular guys are. You’re not quite sure how the passes work, so you don’t give yourself the opportunity to fully experience them. But that doesn’t mean the passes aren’t active. You just don’t know how valuable or how free you are with them. Or even, you don’t know how to activate them.
I’ll give another analogy right before I finish up (Sorry it’s so long).
Imagine a group of people go to a wealthy man’s house and ask for his valuables and he gives them his wife but they still ask for more. Then he goes, ‘But what more do you want? I’ve given you the most important thing I have.’
In both cases, that’s the situation with God. Firstly, He has given us a gift, and has given us the freedom to experience that gift. Secondly, we may ask for so many things, or even nothing at all, and yet still forget the most important gift of all that he has given us – His son 🙂
So what next?
Don’t beat yourself up about it. Don’t be too ashamed to get on your knees and talk to Him concerning it. Remember, there is no condemnation, just the devil’s confusion.
Bible verses: New International Version (NIV)
If you want to know more, feel free to check out Judah Smith’s sermon on Romans 7 & 8 here.
Quick note: For all those who asked, the word Daddy is used to describe God here 🙂