getting your dignity back

Posted: December 29th, 2010 | Filed under: God, life | Tags: , | 12 Comments »

To accept God’s grace, you have to accept a lot more about God than you knew existed to begin with. If your foundation of belief is corrupted by fear and the power of self, you cannot give or receive grace.

In accepting grace, your eyes are opened to the purpose of it all. Grace is easier to accept when you can trust that God is who He says He is. He knows everything and has made everything to work for His purpose. His purpose is Jesus. God did not set up a plan from beginning to end. He set it up from end to beginning. He calls things that haven’t even happened ancient.

I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,’ Isaiah 46:9-10 ESV

God’s purpose, Jesus, came first, His plan came after. Your failures do not mess up God’s plan. They are already accounted for. Things happen slowly for us, but they’ve already happened for Him. His words and His purpose never change because they are already accomplished from where He’s standing. What we see as ‘current’ God sees as history.

Still, it’s what God had in mind all along, to crush him with pain. The plan was that he give himself as an offering for sin so that he’d see life come from it—life, life, and more life. And God’s plan will deeply prosper through him. -Isaiah 53:10

Grace gives you your dignity back. Your dignity is rooted in the identity of Jesus. Jesus came FIRST. He’s not a plan B. He’s not an afterthought. He’s not a result of God saying, ‘Fine. I’ll do this.’ God wanted to ‘do this’. So He created us.

When we sin, we have all of hell trying to get us to believe that we have ruined everything. However, sin illuminates the need for Jesus. Hell wants you to believe that you’re only good enough if you’re good enough. God is trying to get you to see that He created you to need Him, therefore, without grace you are never going to be good enough. It’s not about your failure, it’s about the way this whole thing is set up. We’re useless without Him. Would you want it any other way?

I don’t know how else to say this, but I know I have to be more explicit to make you see beyond basic understanding.

God is love and wants to demonstrate His nature in the most powerful expression.

‘Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.’ -John 15:13 ESV

God is only himself. His plan is for us to know him. In order to know Him, in His fullness, we must first know our sin. He sent the law to create a path for Himself. Jesus completed the law and now you have a connection with God that your own shortcomings and failures can’t take away.

Sin is real and it hurts and it’s supposed to. Knowing the truth about God will never take that away, but it will keep you equipped to get back up and grow from it. God uses everything to glorify Him. He even twists sin into something that reorganizes things to bring you closer to Him. The only thing holding you back is your belief. Yes, please try to avoid hurting yourself and the people you love, but don’t let your failures convince you that you’ve gone too far. You can never go so far that He can’t find you.

He feels your belly when you breath. He hears your sobs that you try to hide in your pillow. He knows you want to be strong, you want to be a big girl/boy. He KNOWS. When you fall, He hurts, too. Not because you hurt Him, but because you hurt you.

Reach for Him. Die to what has been lost. And because He is who He says He is, let Him give you your dignity back.



12 Comments on “getting your dignity back”

  1. 1 Valerie said at 3:41 am on December 29th, 2010:

    'Tis true….to know the sanctuary of the grace from the eye of God is so unexpectedly heart gentle and freeing after having blown it badly…..and oh how we need to ask Him to help us be sanctuaries of grace for each other as we stand up and learn how to live again and again and again!

  2. 2 Serena Woods said at 4:35 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Beautiful, Valerie. 🙂

    Julie R.: 'looking for answers to questions they can't even form in their brain.' …Perfect.

    Robin: it is a journey. I love what i'm learning. hard learned lessons. 🙂

  3. 3 Julie R. said at 4:09 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Loved this! Sharing it with a few people I know… Folks who are searching and looking for answers to questions they can't even form in their brains. They just know something is "off". I've been there… I know what its like to question everything you were ever taught to believe and then discover that those things were merely a shadow of the truth. Every time I learn some new facet of what I originally believed I stand in awe of who God really is, and that HIS TRUTH is setting me free!

  4. 4 Robin Williams said at 4:13 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Couldnt wait to read this after learning you were going to be posting something this morning. Yes, yes, yes… my dignity is back… after many failures. Now its a daily thing to remember He's just a breath away… all I have to do is breathe in the grace. Learning to extend it to others as never before. Its a journey….

  5. 5 Lindsey @ A New Life said at 4:37 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Yes, yes, yes!!!

    This is exactly what we try to get people to understand when we are counseling/mentoring…it is incredibly easy to spend your whole life trying to "make up" for sin and beating yourself up with all the rules you broke in the Bible.

    That right there is where Satan wants us to be– lost spirits full of striving instead of abiding, all the while completely missing the grace and love that is right within our grasp!

    Love this!

    (and totally deleted the word "so" like 4 times, ha!)

  6. 6 Serena Woods said at 5:00 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Awesome, Lindsey. 🙂 can you imagine the difference it would and the ripple effect we would see if people understood grace and the freedom it offers? A lot more love and a lot less fear induced back biting.

  7. 7 Jason said at 5:20 am on December 29th, 2010:

    I second Lindsey's "yes yes yes!!!!" (But I added one more exclamation point!)

    Focusing on the "sin" and trying to make up for it makes us miss so much that God wants to do with and through us. Plus…why should we focus on the death and decay (sin) of the past?

  8. 8 Serena Woods said at 5:29 am on December 29th, 2010:

    It's easier to believe that you're going to hell than it is to accept God's grace. It's because you can earn hell, but you can't earn grace. We want the power, therefore, we'd prefer to go down in flames than to lose our ability to achieve.

    You have to DIE to self (power, ability, worth, etc…) to really LIVE.

    It's twisted, inside out, raw, vulnerable and completely against our human nature.

  9. 9 Franchesca said at 5:31 am on December 29th, 2010:

    "…He hurts because you hurt you." Powerful. I continue to be encouraged by your thoughts. Thank you.

  10. 10 Serena Woods said at 5:56 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Franchesca: Thank you. 🙂

    Eileen: The father of lies telling the biggest lie of all: 'You can't come back from this.' It means that Jesus' sacrifice was not enough. A huge blow to the foundation we stand on, if we believe the lie and not the freedom wielding truth.

  11. 11 eileen said at 5:38 am on December 29th, 2010:

    Your post reminded me of one lie that used to play in my head during one long season of disobedience. "You made your bed now you have to lie in it." Satan wants nothing more than for us to believe this. I continued down the wrong path much too long believing it was too late for me. But Christ offers us a fresh start. EVERY SINGLE day of our lives. It is never too late to reach back up and take hold of His hand. Thank you for sharing you thoughts with the rest of us. People need to hear this.

  12. 12 Justin said at 8:21 pm on January 4th, 2011:

    Love this, Serena. "Reach for him"….stuck with me for the entire day.

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