Can you believe we’re now half way through our devotional series for this quarter? It feels like just yesterday we were screaming “Happy New Year!” I pray this series has been a blessing thus far. In last week’s lesson “God Loves You” , author Angela Perritt used the development of her relationship with her husband Dirk as an example of God’s healing love in action. Plagued by the embarrassment and isolation of having a learning disorder Angela hid behind a facade of perfection while building a wall around her heart. Her biggest fear was that Dirk would discover her secret and leave her alone and ashamed. To her surprise, after her tearful confession, Dirk only loved her through the fear and the two became even closer. Their story reminds us that we do not have to be perfect to be perfectly loved. We are made perfect in Christ and His love transforms! Here are my personal reflections on this lesson:
- How has God used “thorns” in your life to help cave you into His image? Angela’s disorder was surely a thorn for her–something she’d often prayed God would take away for good so she could finally be used for His glory. However, her greatest “flaw” was the very thing God used to showcase His ability to make all things beautiful. The thorns in my own life have kept me humble…teachable. They remind me of my need for a Savior, my need for help, & my need for total dependence on God.
- To what lies concerning God’s love for you are you currently listening? The lies that I am not good enough, righteous enough, holy enough, pure enough, bold enough, smart enough, etc… are just some of the lies that make me feel unqualified for God’s use. As a human shaped in iniquity, I will never be “perfect” in terms of being completely void of mistake and error. However, perfection has never been a prerequisite for God to use anyone. Neither David, Peter, Mary Magdalene, or Martha were perfect (and that’s just a handful) but their hearts were sincere and they lived a life of prayer, faith, repentance, and commitment to the Lord.
- Looking at Matthew 11:28-29, what are some burdens you’ve been carrying that Christ never intended for you to carry? This is a big one for me, and I suspect for all of us as women. I am certainly guilty of allowing the problems of others to affect me personally. It’s one thing to be filled with compassion & have a healing/counseling ministry, but it’s another to be consumed by the issues of others to the point you take on their sorrow and depression. I often feel responsible for the burdens of others. I also get burdened by the belief that I must control all the details of my life–I must have it all figured out. I also carry the weight of others’ opinions about me.
As you can see, these burdens are exactly what we should be releasing to God. Hebrews 4:15-16 shows us that our high priest Jesus knows exactly how it feels to live this human experience. He knows how it feels to be afraid, lonely, uncertain, angry, hurt, etc… and he empathizes with us because He’s been there! This means we can go to Him in prayer with confidence and in honesty. Believing He will extend grace and mercy to us, God’s beloved. Take courage today knowing you are not alone; and while you may not be perfect, He is! Here are this week’s meditation scriptures to get you through this week. Talk to you soon, XO!