Freedom and love through grace

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” Galatians 5:1

Oh the grace of God, through Christ Jesus to help me!!

This has been a surprisingly difficult time. I don’t know why I didn’t expect it. So I struggled – I prayed – I read – I cried out to God.  And verse after verse of encouragement came my way and I’d hold it for a moment and then seemingly forgetting it – I would fall back into struggle. There are times like this in our relationship with Jesus. God is patient and will keep giving us what we need. He will not walk away or give up on us.

My physical eyes see some of my circumstances getting worse. How do I hold onto my faith and the promises God has for me? The verse above is the simple answer – stand fast and don’t revert to our old ways. Simple, but not easy so God provides that grace to endure (that grace again!!! That beautiful grace!)

My mother told me many times in rage (one of her struggles) that she didn’t love me. And no matter how many times she then said that she did, it did not matter because I was already broken. My father said he loved me, but then stopped speaking with me. Every relationship, ended. And it is all summed up with a solid logical conclusion: I am unlovable. Many have tried to love me and many have failed.  

I have been beat, covered with bruises. I have been sexually abused in many ways. I have been psychologically abused, living in fear, and additionally, I internalized to the point where I abused myself.  I am unlovable and this is the normal.  But then, in God – through Christ – I am broken free and I am loved by Abba Father!!!

I did not stand fast in my freedom these past few days. On my birthday many of those people I think I am closest to did not call, did not acknowledge, cancelled plans to see me, I ended up spending that evening alone with two gifts from my co-workers – none from my family and friends. And the gifts and acknowledgements from loved ones came rolling in later. (And it is not about the gift and acknowledgments, but the love it represents.) And at least 100 people said “happy birthday” on social media. But all the blessings and “I love you”s were again cancelled out by the feeling of being unlovable. (The old me. What I grew up with. What I spent a life time living.)  The enemy began an attack on my weakness. 
I fought it off – being determined and encouraging myself in the lord. But at some point yesterday I broke. I bawled. I declared myself unlovable and did not make time to read and pray. (I had a hiccup with the blog posting on Sunday and Sunday’s post was on Monday and no one would have noticed that I did not do my bible time yesterday).  I was weak – I was a mess

”That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:10 NIV

God loves me so much that as this attack rages, he says: “this is a good moment to teach you to let this old way die. You are a new creature in Christ. I have great plans for you that are bathed in love!” (2 Cor. 5:17, Jer. 29:11 & 1 John 3:1)

“And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13 NKJV

Abide in love – Stand fast in the liberty and my liberty is love – anyone else making the connection?

The sweet grace that flows to me from Galatians chapter 5:

After declaring me free, starting in verse 7 God reminds me that love fulfills his calling and purpose.  This love the enemy robbed from me – God’s love for me and other shall through Jesus Christ, flow through me for His glory!!

“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” Galatians 5:16

Walk? Like a ghost/spirit? No – walk like how we describe being a Christian as a “walk with the Lord”.  This verse is encouraging us to stay reading and praying. Stay focused on the Lord and his unseen promises as well as thanking him for the seen blessings.

If I had focused and did my next chapter of Bible reading when I was supposed to – Galatians chapter 5 was there for me during this time. I was distracted and held a pity party for myself – when God had planned this blessing.

I have been praising, thanking God for the gifts and acknowledgments I have received – focusing on the love God provided from me and not on fallible people.  God really in the answer to everything!

Love! It is my promise!

Walk in freedom my new friends and be love. You just don’t know how badly someone needs it. Thanks for reading.