It was hard to go the the gravesites weekend before last and see the new markers for my mom and dad who both passed away last summer, leaving me as an only child feeling all alone. And it was hard to say goodbye to my little grandaughter last weekend when we took her back to my daughter in Oklahoma. She had filled our house with laughter and joy for a week. It's awfully lonely without that little redhead with the big smile.
The old me would have succumbed to depression and wallowed in it for months, hating it and yet strangely comfortable in its' brooding embrace. But this spring I have been "seized by the power of a great affection".
(A Baptist term coined by Gordon Cosby 20 years ago to describe a breakthrough into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ).
I have known Jesus Christ for a long time. I made a "profession of faith" (another Baptist term) when I was 9 years old. I remember lying in bed as a small child praying and praying that God would forgive me. I knew I had done something really bad, thinking the abuse was my fault, and desperate for God to forgive me. I let the guilt and shame drag me into a downward spiral, as a teenager, that would take me a lifetime to get over.
But this spring, as I was exposed to some teachings on radical grace, I have come to truly know Jesus: as Grace personified, as my sin offering, as my burnt offering, as my Redeemer who died on the cross and by His shed blood declared me innocent forever. He has shown me I died with Him, was buried with Him, was raised with Him, and am now seated in heavenhly places with Him. He is showing me how to live in a different environment, one where I have an intimate relationship with Him, and with His Holy Spirit. Praise God! I have been "seized by the power of a great affection", and His name is Jesus!
"Yes, Adam's one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ's one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone", Romans 5:18. NLT
"For He raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus", Ephesians 2:6. NLT