Is God’s Grace Sufficient

Is God’s Grace Sufficient?
And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

My weakness runs deep when it comes to my self-worth. When I look at my past thirty-seven years, I see pain inflicted, and pain received. The trauma lingers, waiting for the perfect moment to reestablish the power it once had over me. The love of Christ is a higher power that cast out fear.

Doubt and worry creep in at the first sign of unpleasant circumstances. When circumstances touch on my past hurts; feeling abandoned, unloved, undesired, I acknowledge those feelings. I do not shove them back into the dark. These are valid hurts that need to be looked at and shared with my brothers in Christ, and sometimes professionals.

I cast out the fear, anxiety, anger and the spirit of control that tries to protect this scared child from further hurt. I call on Jesus in these times.

Abba Father, cast out what is not of YOU Jesus! I repent of the power I gave fear in my time of weakness. Through the blood spilled by the Son of God, my sins are cleansed.

Earnest prayer and reading scripture calm my self-destructive mindset.
Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
1 Peter 1:13

As the fog of anxiety and worry is lifted I remember the truth, we are freed slaves on a journey home. I was a slave to the evil done to me and the evil I used to hurt others. I became an aggressor so that I would no longer be a victim. I lost myself in that false identity for decades. The past hurt controlled the trajectory of all my potential relationships. I was isolated, consumed by fear and ruled by anger. Nothing done to me should have more power than Jesus within me. My reaction is the fruit of that truth. My identity is like a tree planted firmly next to the living water of Jesus. I will weather the storms that come. I will finish this journey and be shaped along the way by Jesus and any circumstance that comes.

No matter what I deserve, I find grace when I seek Jesus.
And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13

When my heart is aligned with Jesus, even a wrong step is resourced toward His will. God searches my heart. The intent behind my mistakes. This to me is another form of Grace. If I turn around and gossip with the desire to hurt someone God knows. If I turn to a brother for advice, God knows my heart.

If I seek advice from the wrong person and it becomes gossip God sees my heart. If you seek Him in all you do, even our mistakes will be covered in grace.

Trust that God is merciful and Just.
Gracious is the Lord, and righteous;
Yes, our God is merciful.

Psalm 116:5

The truth is that we all should find ourselves to be sinners at the end of the day. We become angry, jealous, or hurt and we react. Even if it only lingers in our minds for a moment, we have fallen short. God is merciful. When we turn away from those thoughts or actions of vengeance, He gives us mercy.

Independent from Jesus I am consumed by my need to react.

I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
John 15:1-4

As we face difficult, sometimes painful situations in life we may feel like we are being destroyed, we are to hope and trust in Him. That trust does not prevent me from pleading my case with God. It is ok to admit that some circumstances are too much to bear. Any healthy relationship needs to express the truth of how we feel. Why should my relationship with God be any different? We need His grace as we deeply hurt. We need to acknowledge the hurt we feel to be ministered to by one another and by Jesus. His love endures through any painful season. I only find the strength to weather life’s storms when I am wholly reliant on Jesus.

The Bible Is filled with stories of broken people.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.Romans 8:28

Every story, every challenge is part of a sanctification process that is refining us into a finished work in Christ Jesus. All suffering has meaning through the lens of the Bible.

The way we react is a light for others to see God’s glory revealed in us. I have my own understanding of what good should look like in my own narrow view. God has plans that are more significant than my personal development. I find grace in knowing there is a higher purpose than what I can imagine.

Yearning for His guidance only happens when we lose our way. I just know that without seeking Jesus daily, hourly and second by second I would not find the calm to navigate the storms. Only on my lowest days do I remember that I need guidance. I tend to think I have it together shortly after Jesus calms the storm and corrects my path.

I pray that we all have ears to hear that gentle correction.
I pray that we find comfort no matter what we face.
Our identity needs to be in Jesus, not in a worldview that causes despair and anger.

We are not being destroyed, we are being built up to finish our journey home.

31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
36 As it is written:
‘For your sake, we face death all day long;
We are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.’
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[b] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:31-39

Did you see it? IDENTITY is spelled out through the gospel story! Our IDENTITY is in Christ!

Blessings,
Shawn

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