Often times, the place of sin can feel quite lonely. But we’re not usually alone are we? Shame sits with us. Guilt wraps it’s arm around us. Condemnation convinces us that we will never be able to leave; that we belong here anyway. That we deserve their company. No! Listen to me. Sin has a voice, but Christ put a muzzle on that mouth 2000 years ago! “There is therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:1
What if we changed company. What if, instead of acknowledging and giving place to shame and condemnation, we invited Christ into the very moments of our sin. We need to make a practice of inviting Holy Spirit into our most vulnerable, dark, filthy messes. Behind the walls and disguises. Be brave enough to invite Holy Spirit into your sin while you are committing it. Holy Spirit is our comforter, our counselor, our conviction. He doesn’t look at you disgusted and ashamed. He sees the condition of your heart and holds the remedy. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
Sometimes we forget how kind He truly is. How gentle He is. And we begin to fear punishment. We fear exclusion. We fear being exposed. We fear not being loved. We fear. But we are His children. We are no longer slaves to sin but are born again unto Christ Jesus. (Romans 6:17-18). And fear is just a “liar running out of breath”. (Thanks Hillsong 👍)
Know this: every rebuke, every conviction, every correction is done with the intention of bringing us closer to the Father. He shines his light on the sin in our lives to expose it and remove its power over us! Not to shame or embarrass us. He wants to be close to us. Sin pulls us away from Him, but Christ brings us back closer than ever before. “But now in Christ Jesus, you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” Ephesians 2:13
I wrote a poem a few weeks ago in the midst of my struggle with anger. This has been a giant of mine for a long time. And ever since becoming a mom, it sure has reared it’s ugly head. It reads:
I failed you today.
When You reached out in my need,
I fell short and refused to receive
The monster inside revealed
through the transparent walls that were weakened
by a foundation of sand
Sand I had mistaken for something laid
by the Carpenter’s hand
I failed You today.
When You asked to come in,
I said,“No, I don’t deserve You like this.”
My own anger became my punishment
Projected onto You
I saw the damage that would be left in my wake
had I been consumed
The frequency of my anger shatters mirrors in my soul
The image exposed leaves my heart crippled in its woes
Surrounded by shards of a failed persona
Each piece a reminder of what I aspire to be
is beyond my human reach
My striving has left me tired
I’m forced to rest in the bed of my sorrows
I close my eyes but the image remains
Branded on the heel of my soul is the label I can’t escape
Still I run to You.
And still You take me in.
Your eyes see through the labels
and preconceived fables I’ve attached myself to
Reformed through the fire
and reclaimed from the mire of my illusive state
A vapor of Your breath brings forth the harvest
of the Truths You have set
Now my name reads in stone
Scribed on eternities scroll
The banner I wear is Peace and Joy
Anger must yield to my Father’s voice.
In that moment I could feel the pull of the Lord. “Hannah, let me in. Invite me in right now.” But my shame told me I don’t deserve Him in that moment. When I finally surrendered and gave Him my yes, I broke. I came undone. I didn’t try to hide my heart anymore. I didn’t try to deny that moment. I accepted the condition of my heart and His kindness swooped in and He Fathered me. He healed a piece of me in that moment. I exposed my wounds to His healing touch and anger lost its power over me. This has become a practice of mine. When anger returns, I know who to turn to. Healing is a journey and Holy Spirit is walking with me.
Maybe you struggle with anger. Maybe you have an addiction. Depression? Sickness? Maybe the battle is in your mind. Where has the enemies aimed his arrows at you? Wherever it is, whatever it looks like, invite the Lord into the midst of your battle.
It should be our delight as His children to confess our sin and expose it to the light. We should be so confident in His kindness, and His goodness, and His mercy that we don’t fear being found out. We should fear holding onto our sin more than we do exposing it. I don’t want to live one day further from God than I ever need to. I want to be on a constant motion toward Him. Endlessly propelling into more and more freedom. That should be our motivation. The love of Christ. “Be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:16. A command made out of pure love and goodness. Freedom. Purity. Joy. Peace. All of this found in His holiness.
I hate sin. I hate what it does to me. I hate what it does to my friends. To my family. Be quick to rid your life of sin. Be quick to run to the Father. Get comfortable with an open heart before God. I have decided that I HAVE to know Him. I HAVE to be close to Him. Therefore, I can’t afford to have sin in my life or in my heart. It has to go.
Be encouraged. Your Father in Heaven sees the condition of your heart right now, and He wants to come in and purify you and draw you unto Him. It is His delight to be with you. Don’t allow that to be hindered. When you confess your sin to Jesus, you will not be met with shame. If you are, then you tell that shame to go to Hell, because that’s exactly where it came from. Jesus is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. That is who you are meeting. That is who is waiting for you on the other side of your sin.
“In that day, you will know that I am in my Father, and you in Me, and I in you. Whoever has My commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.” John 14:20-21