I answered the phone to the sound of tears. Not just the soft kind, but the kind that you shed when you're on the brink. The kind you shed when you're staring into the same old pit and feel like there's nothing you can do to keep yourself from tumbling down. The kind you shed when you feel like you're there all over again, in the place you never wanted to go back to. And it feels like the same old struggle is the same as it's always been.
Between tears she said, "The thing I'm the most scared of is that I haven't changed."
Lean in loved one and listen closely, because truth sets us free. Imagine we are face to face, I am staring you in the face with my finger in the truth, and maybe a bit of your face, because it’s a battle out there, but we have what we need to live victorious.
When the enemy whispers, "You are the same old woman. You will never change. Your situation will never change," you stand firm in the righteousness Christ won for you.
Grab your sword and say aloud to the darkness:
On my own maybe. But I am NOT alone. JESUS will never leave or forsake me. My progress is imperfect but it's not up to me. JESUS who began the good work in me and HE WILL carry it on to completion until His glorious day. JESUS called me and JESUS is faithful. And JESUS will do it. And while we're on the subject, JESUS' grace is sufficient for me. JESUS' power is perfected in my weakness. So go ahead and tell me about my weaknesses because I will boast of my weaknesses so CHRIST's power rests on me. I take pleasure in my weakness, for when I am weak, I am strong.
When it sounds more like a shout with a heavy dose of guilt you know it wreaks of the father of lies. Condemnation is his signature. It sounds a little like this: you should know better, by now you shouldn't be struggling, by now you should've pulled up your socks and figured this thing out.
Grab your sword and say to the darkness:
There is now now condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. I'm in Christ. So the verdict over my life is not guilty. All I proved is that I still need Jesus. And, I still have Him because He will has me.
This is the truth my sisters, we all stumble. We all still need Jesus and we just keep proving it. Your love for Jesus will grow deeper as you receive His love and grace when you are flat on your face.
You know you are growing in grace when the space between your fall and the call lessens.
As our falling down and calling out lose the guilty and shame-filled space in between, we experience the gospel in greater depths.
We all stumble. (Jesus' own brother said so.) We all face the temptation to temper our fear with the same old thing. It is guilt, not grace that keeps us from calling out for help. It is shame that keeps us blaming ourselves. We must never stop calling out to Jesus because He never tires of being our Saviour. We think, surely He won't want to help me with this again. Surely He will be angry and shout at me, you knew better.
The truth is, we still need Jesus.
Grab your sword today and read it this truth aloud with your own name where you read [ME]:
He reached down from heaven and took hold of [ME]; He pulled [ME] out of deep waters. He rescued [ME] from my powerful enemy and from those who hated me. They confronted me in the day of my distress, BUT the Lord was my support. He brought [ME] tp a spacious place; He rescued [ME] because He DELIGHTED in [ME]... You train [MY] hands for WAR... you have given me the shield of YOUR salvation; (Psalm 18:16-19, 34)
Get your sword ready. The lies will come, and when they do, stand and swing your heart out from inside the victory that Jesus Christ has already won for you. You cannot surprise, out-struggle, out-stumble or out-sin Jesus' grace and how He delights to rescue you.