Saturday, March 31, 2012

for when you do a bad job.

sometimes as we trod along in life, 
we get stopped by a major flaw that emerges from somewhere down in the darkest places of our souls. 

and sometimes the flaw doesn't come alone, but brings a few of his friends, leaving you to wonder how you could have ever believed that you were a decent person. 

In the past several weeks, 
some terribly ugly flaws have made their way from my soul 
to the surface of my life, where I've had a way-too-clear view of them. 

As my ugliness got uglier, I felt pretty sure that when God looked down at me from his very white, very clean throne, He was shaking his head in disappointment, elbowing Jesus and nodding my way, saying something like, "Look at her. That's disgusting."

But God isn't always like what I think He is. 

This week a funny thing has happened. 
A handful of people whom I really admire have contacted me and have said the same thing,
"You're doing a good job."

"Uhhh, no, no I'm not," has been my initial reaction.
Then I stop for a second and God says something like this to my heart,
"They're right, Ab. You really are doing a good job."

How on earth could He say that after taking a look at what an awful job I've been doing?
What about all of those ugly things that have been floating around in my head?
Does He not see all of that?

He does.
He sees all of that rotten stuff at the surface of my life.
And what's even more amazing was that He saw all of that rotten stuff before it got to the surface, when it was still tucked away in the dark place.
And through all of that, He still hasn't left me. 
Still isn't disgusted, still isn't ashamed.

I don't really understand it all,
but I know that when I'm weak and staring at my weaknesses,
God is able to be strong, 
and He likes that.
I also know that Jesus knew about my shame before He died for me, 
and He took it so that I could live shame-free.

Next time you find yourself doing an awful job and knee-deep 
in sin, 
know that your Creator is waiting for you to ask for help, 
and that His love is unchanged. 

Thanks for taking ugly and turning it into beauty, Jesus.
You're wonderful.

And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness."
-2 Corinthians 12:9

My brethren, count it all job when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. 
-James 1:2-4