I wanted to share how this relationship with Jesus is REAL for me. We shared at a recent Work-Life Networking lunch about how some look at God like a father figure. That didn't work for me simply because my earth-bound father relationship was non-existent. And for me to accept that God was real in my life, I couldn't allow myself to fall in the trap of seeing Him in my realm. Enter in Jesus. Big brother Jesus. The one who adopted me into the family - regardless of ME - my sin and all - I am in the family. So, even sin no longer separates me from God. Let me share.
Jesus adopted me in the family. NOTHING can separate me from God's love (Romans 8:38-39). I can come before Him with confidence knowing He will show me grace, not condemnation (Hebrews 4:16, Romans 8:1). He uses even my own rebellious sin for good (Romans 8:28). Now, the apostle Paul writes to the Romans about grace and asks the question, "Should we go on sinning?" Knowing that God forgives, God loves, God works it ALL out for good. Well, to be a recognizable follower of Jesus - we should choose what is good...to not sin...and pray for help from the Holy Spirit to see that through. But what happens when we DO sin? We all fall short. Everyday. Do you give up? Throw blame on circumstances or people?
For me...that's when I go back to that foundation of Jesus' love, acceptance, and grace for me. I may not immediately stop the sin that is causing grief and guilt. But He still loves me, because He just does. And when I confront that sin, confidently before the throne of grace, I feel like the image in this post - arms wrapped around me in a love so big it's indescribable. And I am truly alive, living out a REAL relationship with the God of the Universe who created me for a purpose, a Big Brother who has saved me and brought me into a HUGE eternal family, and the Holy Spirit who breathes new life into me daily. I can come to Him for ANYTHING - good or bad, big deals or small frustrations, attitude issues, joyful dances, hurts and hopes, my desires or devastations - He's always there for me. He listens, He guides, He saves my sanity and my heart. If you don't have a relationship like that, I'd be happy to share!