Jim and I are continuing to read great books each morning, though I haven’t actually updated my sidebar for awhile. I’ll get on that…uh…tomorrow?
We’re currently reading A Quest for More: living for something bigger than you by Paul Tripp. We’re still in the early, yet very convicting, chapters where the author is helping us identify two kingdoms: the kingdom of self and the kingdom of God. And we should understand that these two kingdoms battle every day…in the little things of life. But, he encourages us to know that we have been given ample provision through Christ to win these battles. Among these things that God has given us:
“On the cross Christ paid the debt for every selfish desire, thought, word, or deed to which you will ever give yourself. You no longer have to be afraid to own up to your selfishness. You do not have to whitewash your thoughts and motives. You do not have to cover your sin by blaming others or by self-atoning logic. You do not have to give yourself to acts of penance (self-atonement) that make you feel better about yourself. You do not have to search for biblical passages that will give ease to your conscience. No, your debt has been fully paid. Your punishment has been borne by Another. There is One who has taken your place and been condemned instead of you. Paul says, ‘He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross’ (Colossians 2:13b-14). As God’s child, you have been forgiven for every act of self-focused independence and rebellion. You have been freed from the debt of your every failure to love God above all else and your neighbor as yourself. You no longer need to live in hiding. Forgiving grace welcomes you out of the darkness to lift the burden of refusal, guilt, fear, and shame off of your shoulders. You have been invited to confess and receive the forgiveness that is yours.”
Wow. What a God we serve. Paying the debt I could never ever pay. And not because of anything that I have done…simply for His good pleasure. He loves me and gave Himself for me. Amazing, isn’t it?!
Thank you, Lord.