Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Uninhibited (pt.2) "Battling Guilt"

“Even though I am guilty, it is not God’s desire for me to live a life based in guilt. It is His desire for me to know that He knew of my guilt before the crime was committed and that I am accepted regardless.”

I think a deeper issue than I know has been revealed to me. I never thought I walked around feeling guilty or like God was just itching to “smite” me. So, if someone were to ask me if my relationship with God is based on guilt, I could honestly say, “no.” I would then add a nice scripted rebuttal about how in a relationship it isn’t guilt based, but that He loves me and even though He cannot stand my sin, He loves me and something about how Christ’s sacrifice has washed away my sins and opened the avenue to this relationship I have with God.

And that is true…


I had to ask myself recently…why do I do the things I do?

What is my motivation?

Do I do the things I do because if I do not do them I feel as though I am just waiting for the hammer to drop and for God to cut me off? Take away my calling? Strip me of His grace? Recall his mercy? Strike me down? Pull back his presence? Or…do I do them because it is with a genuine heart that I feel led of God to my actions because I genuinely love Him?

To answer this…you can’t just give a knee jerk response. You have to really think about it.
I know… I am a recovering knee jerk responder.

I come to this conclusion, the thought that I am a part of a guilt driven relationship because if I do something wrong, I sin, respond poorly, or just something that isn’t considered to be very godly, I do feel guilt and therefore my confidence in who I am (my identity) in God is fractured. I feel as though I am in an un-recoverable relationship and am in a pit that separates me from the God I love. I feel almost too guilty to pray, when I do pray, my prayers are mostly just me repeatedly saying I am sorry and how I can’t believe He would love someone like me. 

There is nothing wrong with being repentant when you are wrong…

…but I began to wonder, do I question the limits of His love? 

Am I so inhibited that I don’t really believe that God’s love, His calling, His mercy, grace, and patience? 

I am sure that many of us struggle with this, but here is where it has taken a more “smack in the face” approach for me. If I lack confidence in the boundlessness of God’s love, my relationship with Him will only proceed in love as far as I can comprehend. It will be based in manmade limitations and not faith and as soon as I cross into a place where His love is not understandable by me, I enter into a guilt relationship with Him.

That is not His desire.

Does God really want me to feel so guilty about my wrong doings that I am paralyzed from a lack of confidence that I am not willing to listen to Him and step out in faith?

Of course not.

An uninhibited relationship with God is not based on what we understand of God, which is based on guilt. An uninhibited relationship with God is based on faith and the belief that He is all that He says He is, and His love (through Christ) is more powerful than our sin. It isn’t that we go out and sin for fun, but that when we do mess up…it doesn’t ruin anything, in fact God can use our unintentional floundering to glorify Himself.

He is THAT good.

When I think about the limitations I have placed on my life because I am not good enough, not mature enough, not developed enough, or whatever other reason I have dreamt up I am sorrowful. However, I believe God can even turn the limits that I have wrongfully placed on my life for his glory…and that is exciting.
What limits have you had on your life? As cliché as it sounds, God is actually big enough to glorify Himself beyond your limits. Don’t let this inhibit you…and I will work on growing to do the same. I am learning that there is a lot more growth to be done, but I know His Spirit is a great teacher.

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