This is one of the toughest posts I have been called to write. Admittedly, it has taken more than a month for the words to come together to share. It bears an issue with which I really struggle, and I know there are others here who deal with the same things. I have heard too many of them around me lately.
After praying for how to share, I was blessed with a testimony of Rhett Walker, lead singer of the contemporary Christian Group The Rhett Walker Band. Rhett was a preacher's child who led a life of rebellion during his teen years and fathered a child.
He discussed the destructive behavior I call "self beating." You know the feeling, that nagging, second guessing of yourself, That voice reminding you often of the things that could have been better or should have been better. "Oh if only I had," or "if only I hadn't." Satan is so wonderful to remind us of our imperfections and use it to keep us down. Don't you find it so much easier to forgive others of their wrongs and imperfections than you do yourself?
Does that describe you? It does me. And a dear friend called me out on it not too long ago.
Rhett Walker spoke of this self beating behavior, saying it dishonors God when we do things like this. Why? God is the grantor of mercy. He forgives and forgets. We should likewise do the same.
Mercy is defined by Webster's Dictionary as: 1) compassion or forbearance shown to an offender or subject; clemency or kindness extended to someone instead of strictness or severity; 2) a blessing regarded as an act of divine favor or compassion; 3) relief of distress; compassion shown to victims of misfortune.
God's great gift of mercy, given through his son Jesus Christ on the cross means we are forgiven. His compassionate divine act means we are redeemed. We owe it to ourselves to hold our heads high because he created us to be who we are. He's proud of us, and we should be proud of ourselves. All those things we beat ourselves up for every day...he has placed those in the past, and its our job to do that too. We're not perfect, but we are forgiven. What a miracle to share with the world!
But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.
I want to share with you the words to Big Daddy Weave's song Redeemed. What a beautiful message he gives of how God sees past all the "stuff" in our lives we can't seem to put behind us. He sees a beautiful child, full of his Glory, ready to share that redemption message with the world to help someone else overcome their chains of bondage.
Seems like all I could see was the struggle Haunted by ghosts that lived in my past Bound up in shackles of all my failures Wondering how long is this gonna last Then You look at this prisoner and say to me “Son, stop fighting a fight that's already been won” (Chorus) I am redeemed You set me free So I'll shake off theses heavy chains And wipe away every stain Now I'm not who I used to be I am redeemed I am redeemed All my life I have been called unworthy Named by the voice of my shame and regret But when I hear You whisper, “Child lift up your head” I remember oh God, You're not done with me yet Chorus I don't have to be The old man inside of me 'Cause his day is long dead and gone Because I've got a new name A new life I'm not the same And a hope that will carry me home Chorus (X2)
Beautiful children of God, lift your head high. You have been redeemed, forgiven. Throw off your shackles and go forth, free from your past. Do not let Satan steal the power of your gift. And if you haven't experienced the redemption and freedom that comes with accepting Christ as your personal savior, I will be glad to help you do just that. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Have a blessed day!