God's word in today's world

Does your package turn your stomach?


I was waiting in reception at Bargain Books to find out if they could stock our books. I was a bit nervous. I’m not a good salesperson and would rather give something away than sell it.

I couldn’t see the door from where I was sitting, but I could clearly hear every time it opened. It sounded like a big door. And every time I heard it opening, I wondered whether it was the manager I came to see. And my stomach turned.

This reminded me of my school days. So many times, I waited to be admitted to the principal’s office. Every time the door creaked as it opened, I wondered whether it was my turn.

Mostly it was because of my shenanigans the previous night at the debate evening or maybe because the language teacher had once again chased me out for disrupting the class.
When I was eventually admitted, not much was said. I meekly took my punishment.

If you know you’re guilty, you’re guilty. Talking won’t help much. Usually, it only gets you deeper in trouble.

Sometimes I find that I think and feel the same way about the wrong things I still do, that do not fit God’s will. I feel the same way about the things that I should do, but that I don’t do. Sometimes I’m lazy. Sometimes I don’t want to leave my comfort zone.

Then I feel guilty and together with the guilty feelings, my stomach turns. Sometimes I wonder what would happen if Jesus turned up while I was doing those wrong things. Would he simply shake His head, turn around, and leave me there?

Many of us are still caught up in those Calvinist feelings of guilt. The feeling that if you had done wrong, you will be punished somewhere along the way.

It’s so unnecessary. It trips us up. And I suspect the devil gets in bed with those guilty feelings. He spurs us on. He shines the spotlight on our past and asks whether we are really good enough. Then we feel even worse and it becomes a vicious cycle …

This is so stupid, because this is what God Himself says about our sin: 17He concludes, “I’ll forever wipe the slate clean of their sins.”

I don’t really know how God does this, but He does. What an awesome blessing! God takes a giant eraser and deletes all the punishment we’ve accumulated. It no longer even exists in His mind.

Does this give us the greenlight to cross the line and wallow in the mud? Certainly not! Rather it’s the green light to a life of freedom. To live free from the chains holding us back. Now we can go and enjoy life knowing we never need to stand in line to be punished for everything we’ve done wrong!

Thank goodness!

Scripture
Hebrews 10:11-18

Reflection
Do you still carry the burden of your sin now and then?
What must you do to let go of that package?
What must you do practically to live freely?

Prayer
Father, I don’t understand how You could write off the debt for my sin just like that. That’s probably why I struggle to leave those packages with You. I confess all my sin. Please help me let go of it and live freely. Amen.

Shalom

Gerjo Ben

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