nothing but the cross

Posted: November 17th, 2009 | Filed under: life | 8 Comments »

‘If someone falls into sin, forgivingly restore him, saving your critical comments for yourself. You might be needing forgiveness before the day’s out.’ -Galatians 6:1

One of the biggest issues I’ve seen among believers is about how to respond when one of their own sins. I think that most want to do the right thing, but don’t know how. When a person sins, especially the ‘big sins’, they create a mess. Continuing in the sin often seems easier than coming clean because more often than not, a person is abandoned in their mess as soon as the sin is exposed.

This leaves the fallen under a tremendous amount of suffering. The weight of their sin and it’s effects are crushing. Though it may be tempting to tell them that they deserve it, that is not what the cross stands for. The cross is something completely undeserved and universally available. It goes beyond the one who didn’t know better, because it’s a categorical phenomenon to those who absolutely did know better. The greater the sin, the greater the gift of grace. Grace is relentless and it never loses simply because it won long before any of us were in the picture.

Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived. -Galatians 6:2-3

It’s easy to know how to communicate with someone who is not a Christian when they want to know how to get rid of their sin. We tell them that everyone sins and that the responsibility to clean themselves up does not belong to them. We tell them that there is never a place where they can go that would be too far. However, it seems that the rules change once you become a believer.

It appears that believers are put under a new law (the old ‘law’) and are required to perform accordingly.

Life is hard enough as it is. People don’t need any extra pressure to keep up with the standards put on the so-called code of Christian living. Most of us are doing well to have the faith that God loves us even when we aren’t very lovable. It’s hard to believe that God can forgive the selfishness that hazes our view. We’re not supposed to exhaust our ability to do good, we’re just supposed to not let our faith fail.

So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. -Galatians 6:9

If you’re to the point that you can say you’ve got perfect faith in God and now just need to focus on your level of holiness, then you’re further from the truth than you’ve probably ever been. Perfect faith does not exist because of the continuous faith evolution that occurs in a growing Christians life. If you’ve stopped growing, evolving, then you’re dead.

If people know this already, then why do they still respond so ungraciously when fellow believers fall down? It’s as though the understanding of Truth dissolves when you’re not hearing it.

Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don’t act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like. -James 1:22-24

We’re not supposed to add to the trouble of human lives by imposing rules. The law is written on their hearts by no doing of their own.

They show that God’s law is not something alien, imposed on us from without, but woven into the very fabric of our creation. There is something deep within them that echoes God’s yes and no, right and wrong. -Romans 2:15

If someone (unless you’re 12 and it’s your mother) tries to apply their personal rules for Christian conduct to you, then you must reflect on their identity somehow. They’re not trying to improve you, they’re trying to boost themselves.

These people who are attempting to force the ways of circumcision on you have only one motive: They want an easy way to look good before others, lacking the courage to live by a faith that shares Christ’s suffering and death. All their talk about the law is gas. They themselves don’t keep the law! And they are highly selective in the laws they do observe. They only want you to be circumcised so they can boast of their success in recruiting you to their side. That is contemptible! -Galatians 6:12-13

Shake out of those cold fingers trying to tie you down like a sacrificial lamb. You are on your own journey. Be free in your God discovery expedition. Write music when the Truth sings and learn from the tumbles. You start out like a drunk college student with the wet diploma, but you gain maturity in the times that sober. Forget about what people think of you, just love God, be real and keep notes.

Because of that Cross, I have been crucified in relation to the world, set free from the stifling atmosphere of pleasing others and fitting into the little patterns that they dictate. -Galatians 6:15

Loosen up your girdle’s and start learning the stuff that matters. It takes a lot of bravery to walk around without your makeup, but the scripture spells it out for you. There are no more secrets, the freedom is found in the believing. When you stop straining and start seeing that you can’t perfect what you couldn’t begin, then you have to return to the simple faith to see the truth that sets you free.

Can’t you see the central issue in all this? It is not what you and I do—submit to circumcision, reject circumcision. It is what God is doing, and he is creating something totally new, a free life! -Galatains 6:16

inspired by Galatians 6


8 Comments »


8 Comments on “nothing but the cross”

  1. 1 Franchesca said at 9:10 pm on November 16th, 2009:

    Beautiful. Well said,

    "There are no more secrets, the freedom is found in the believing. When you stop straining and start seeing that you can’t perfect what you couldn’t begin, then you have to return to the simple faith to see the truth that sets you free."

    AMEN

  2. 2 April said at 1:57 am on November 17th, 2009:

    I was in tears half way through this…was about to quote a line, but would be quoting the whole thing. Love it. I'm inspired. I'm pointed to God. I can't believe how often I need to be reminded to remove the mask and drop my concerns of what does so and so think of me…. relax and trust God. relax and be free in Christ. I am starting this day off free and my heart is His.

  3. 3 Lindsey @ A New Life said at 3:43 am on November 17th, 2009:

    AMEN AMEN AMEN!!!

    Learning the stuff that matters and that freedom is found in believing are two truths that I have learned the hard way. Love this.

    Sorry, nothing long-winded and eloquent is coming out today 🙂

  4. 4 HisFireFly said at 4:04 am on November 17th, 2009:

    "Forget about what people think of you, just love God, be real and keep notes."

    Continuing to pray for the release from bondage to the fear of man…

    great words, Serena!

  5. 5 Sisterlisa said at 7:29 am on November 17th, 2009:

    Beautiful Serena!

  6. 6 Lisa Wade said at 8:07 am on November 17th, 2009:

    Serena, I Love this. So true and really hits the nail on the head.

    I was always the odd one out, I guess. If someone "sinned" I was drawn to them to be sure they knew, YOU ARE STILL LOVED AND ACCEPTED IN CHRIST!!!!!

    You can get through this and I will stand right beside you and cheer you on.

    Thank you.

    It makes me think of a song from the 70's by Sammy Hall and the Sammy Hall singers, " Walk a mine in my shoes".

    Always…In His Grip!!!

    Lisa

  7. 7 Christina said at 12:50 pm on November 17th, 2009:

    This really hits my heart. I have been learning about authenticity and just living in love and grace from your site. It really is radically different than what we are taught in organized Christianity. I guess my mind now wonders to what this would look like if all believers lived this way…

    what do you think?

  8. 8 forex robot said at 11:04 pm on November 18th, 2009:

    Amazing as always 🙂