I am the thorn in His crown.
The splinter in His thumb.
That tag that is constantly rubbing,
and the child that seems to always be whining.
And He loves me anyway.
I was talking to a young woman recently who had been processing the gospel message:
- We have all sinned against a Holy God. [Romans 3:23)
- The consequence of sin is death/separation from God. [Romans 6:23]
- God loved the people He created so much that He came to earth to show us just how much by taking our place on the cross to pay the penalty for us . [Romans 5:8]
- Salvation is possible for all who call out to Him in repentance and belief. [Romans 10:9-13]
This simple message becomes complex when we factor in all of our personal stories. Each one unique. Some more complicated that the others.
But His message is the same for us all:
“For His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse.” Romans 1:20
My story is not the same as this young woman, and though she had heard the gospel many times and had been contemplating it for awhile, one particular point stood out in pastor’s sermon on this particular day.
The same point that spoke to my heart over 40 years ago…
“What do you think? If a man has 100 sheep, and one of them goes astray, won’t he leave the 99 on the hillside and go and search for the stray? And if he finds it, I assure you: He rejoices over that sheep more than over the 99 that did not go astray. In the same way, it is not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones perish.”
While I knew the message of John 3:16 was that “God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son…”, I struggled to believe and didn’t fully understand how or why He would love me. I believed and out-right feared God. I believed that He loved the world, but why would He love me? Even as a young girl I had no problem recognizing my own sin and my failure to live up to His standard of righteousness. What I saw as incompetence on my part eventually became the catalyst for salvation.
Because the Bible is clear that redemption is not about what we do, but what Christ has done for us.
What a freeing revelation! When I finally understood that there was nothing I could bring to Him but my humble acceptance of these simple truths, the door of salvation swung wide open.
“Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8
Complex faith? We are the ones who complicate it. Either we trust Him or we don’t. Either we believe His Word or we put our faith in something more temporary.
Simple faith means you choose to build your life on a sure foundation. The solid rock. [Matthew 7:24] The Rock of Ages.
“For I will proclaim Yahweh’s name.
Declare the greatness of our God!
The Rock—His work is perfect;
all His ways are entirely just.
A faithful God, without prejudice,
He is righteous and true.” Deuteronomy 32: 3-4
The simple truth: There is One who loves the world He created, and that, my friend, includes you!
Can your remember a time when you made a commitment to follow Jesus? What stands out in your mind about that day? If you’ve never experienced that kind of simple faith, then today can be that day! You can use this FAITH post to help you make this all important commitment as you begin your journey of #SimpleFaith. If you do, I would sure love to hear from you!