How To Cover Your Guilt

One of my son’s vocabulary words this week is “sentimental”.

Sentimental

As the hormotional component in this marital equation, I could wax sentimental about A Lot Of Things, but I’ll spare you.

Instead, my mind instantly went to the fresh new ways God has shed His abundant grace on me, lately.  So. Many. Ways.

I blew it, and big, this very week, in fact.

And, once again, El-Channun (the Gracious God) showed up. And big!

I committed to being  a part of an amazing team of women with servant’s hearts and a willingness to do a Great Thing each day, online.  As a member of this team, my commitment required one time slot over each of four days, over the course of a few months, to do my part in this Thing.

For the last few weeks, I dropped the ball.

And my gracious Team Leader covered my shifts.

I told her and myself, “I will not drop the ball again!”. And I meant it.

But I did.

And the guilt I felt as I heaped ashes on my head.

  • Letting someone I care about down.
  • Not keeping my word.
  • My inability to be consistent now revealed

I let my mistakes become monumental in my mind.

But she poured out grace, instead. God showered me in grace through her.

  • Recognition and praise
  • No condemnation
  • Love poured out

Undeserved.  All.

In this final week of my time studying A Confident Heart by Renee Swope, I came across a couple of words, mid-sentence on page 200 that spoke right into my heart:

Let_His_Grace_Cover_ACH

He cannot love me more.  Tears wash my dirty cheeks as I realize, afresh, how very much this God I long to be more like, loves me.  Despite myself.

He loves me no less for the times I snap at the ones I love.  Or whisper wrongly.  Or step forward too quickly. There is nothing I’ve done, not a thing, that He didn’t already know.  There’s not a single thoughtless word or deed that He didn’t already willingly agree to be nailed to the cross for.

God’s love is bigger.

And that is something to get sentimental about!

Yes indeedy.

Thank you for joining me on this journey through “A Confident Heart” by Renee Swope.  Please consider joining us over at Proverbs 31 Ministries’ next Online Bible Study of “Made To Crave” by Lysa TerKeurst, beginning January 19th. Sign ups are here.  If you’d like to read some of the other thoughts participants had on these final chapters of “A Confident Heart”, please click the button below.

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Just A…

Aside from the Strep Throat running rampant in this house, I’ve acquired another, much nicer gift this week.

I’ve been digging into chapter 8 of “A Confident Heart” by Renee Swope over on the P31 Online Bible Study blog. And this chapter?  This is The One I’ve been dreading since I first scanned through the chapter titles a few months ago: ‘When Doubt Whispers “I Don’t Have Anything Special To Offer”‘.

Did you wince just a little?

I did.

How long, Lord?  How long until I finally accept, once and for all time, that I am not only forgiven, redeemed, and loved, but also gifted to be used by You?

There is one phrase I hear thrown around like so much confetti. I hear it coming from my mouth, as well as others. Only, there is no party going on when I hear it.  It often starts with a conversation that goes a little something like this:

“What do you do?”

“Oh, I’m just a _________.” (insert whatever word or words you usually end that statement with.)

That gift I spoke of receiving this week? It was the gift of confirmation.

Confirmation that I’m not “just a” anything.

And, neither are you.

I’m not just a stay-at-home mom, just a blogger, or just a graphic design wannabe. I don’t just manage my son’s many needs, or just chauffeur my family around, or just lead a women’s small group . I’m not just a wife, just a student, or just a writer.

No, I’m not.

This week, when that tape started playing, I started to hear the message for what it was.  A lie.  It’s meant to be an arrow of hurt sent straight into my heart. That lie is meant to wound me and keep me from moving forward in all that I am.

You know it’s a lie, too, don’t you?

Renee speaks to the importance of thinking on those things that bring you great pleasure to do and resting in the fact that, “The desires of your heart indicate your God-given passion to make a difference somewhere.” (pg. 142)

Because, we all long to, don’t we?

Make a difference?

Somewhere?

Somehow?

And when Doubt starts whispering and hissing that you have nothing special to offer because you are just a…

Please! Turn around and face Doubt squarely and say out loud, “Yes I Do!”.  Do it for yourself.  Do it to honor the things that God has called you to in this season of life, whether seemingly insignificant or not.

ACH_Talent_Big_Small

We’ll hold hands and shout it out together. Yes indeedy!

I’m joining up with the lovely community of hearts over at the Proverbs 31 Ministries Online Bible Study Blog Hop today.  We are all reading through “A Confident Heart” by Renee Swope.  Please click the button below to read from a treasure trove of encouragement.

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