This post is going to be kind of a recap on everything that I have been talking about in my Bible study (iFollow the Cross).
First of all, it's going really well. I love being able to talk about God freely. But I feel like things need to change. I need to reach more people. I need to reach out. And I need God to help me with that. All my life, I've felt stuck in a box, being too scared to talk about God for fear of what people would think about me.
But I've realized something. It's not about this world. It's not about other people's opinions. It's about God. It's about what He thinks of me. I want nothing more than to please Him. This life wasn't given to me so that I could waste it on earthly human matters. It was given to me to honor and bring glory to God's name.
I've found that it's very easy to get caught up in this life. For everyone. We all have those days where we want people to listen to our problems, give us advice, etc. And through all of that, I forget that God already knows what I'm going through, and that He is there for me through it all.
I came to this epiphany while doing this Bible study.
As I've mentioned before, we are working out of Max Lucado's book called He Chose the Nails. There are so many great things within this book, so I thought that I would share my findings with you.
1. I Will Bear Your Dark Side: God's Promise in the Soldier's Spit- There is a beast in each of us, and God has looked past all of that. He sent Christ to bear the beast within us, so that we could become beautiful. There is no way that we could enter Heaven without Him, and I thank Him so much for thinking enough of me to sacrifice Himself.
2. I Loved You Enough to Become One of You: God's Promise in the Crown of Thorns- Thorns in the Bible are a consequence of sin. And Jesus bore them for me, and for you. A man, perfectly sinless, took on the thorns, as if He had committed those crimes on His own. The crown was meant to mock Him, because He called Himself a King. And what an amazing King He is. But for it, He was mocked and laughed at.
3. I Forgive You: God's Promise in the Nails- Jesus was raised as a carpenter. Ever think about that? He had nailed things, worked with wood, and here He was being nailed to the very thing He knew the most about. Those nails held Him to the cross. But those nails also nailed a list of our past and future sins to it. Between the hand of God and the cross, there was a list. Yes, a list. Not something that we can see; not something that was visible for the world to see, but God could see it. And with the shedding of His Son's blood, that list was covered. Our sins have been forgiven. Forever.
4. I Will Speak to You in Your Language: God's Promise Through the Sign- The sign hanging above Jesus' head was written in 3 languages, so that all could interpret what it said. "This is the King of the Jews." Here Christ was marked as the King that He rightfully was, but again, it was a way of mocking Him. Those people never knew that His name would be carried though the generations. But it was. And I'm glad it did. This sign is a way of speaking to each and every one of us. Jesus speaks to each of us in our own language, but not the kind of language that you are thinking about. Yes, every tribe and nation has their own 'language,' but Christ knew that each of us respond differently to things, and He understands it. No matter what it is.
5. I Will Let You Choose: God's Promise Through the Two Crosses- Do you know that we were given a choice? We have free will. We can CHOOSE to live for God, or CHOOSE not to. Next to Jesus, on either side, there were two criminals. Both of them were there for the same reason; they had broken the law. And there, between them, hung my Lord. One of them mocked Jesus, told Him to call down the angels from Heaven if He was who He said He was. The other, repented and asked Jesus to remember Him. And Jesus did. Do you think it was coincidence God gave us this story? Do you think it's coincidence that one man went one way, while the other man turned to God. It was a choice. We were each given that choice. God wants us to choose Him, and even though many of us won't, our eternity is up to us. We weren't given many choices in our lives, but the most important decision, our souls resting place, was left for us to choose.
God has done so many things for us, and He gave us so much through the scene of the crucifixion. So as Easter comes upon us in just a couple of weeks, remember this. These were God's promises to us. And He won't go back on a promise.
He has promised to love us through our beast-like qualities.
He has promised to remove our sins; as far as the east is from the west.
He has promised to speak to us in our own language, and to understand us.
He has promised to let us choose.
God, thank you for your mercy.