I always say that one day I will write about the grace of God in my life. Or in simpler terms, the goodness that God has shown me and keeps showing me even when I do not deserve it. Though I know that I cannot exhaust expressing this gift of God in my life in just a single post, I will still try to share it as best as I can from my heart.
Well, to be honest, I even have no idea where to begin because looking back from today’s lens; my whole life is a series of grace upon grace. Back then, I never saw it as so. I believed that I was handed this life by the universe or by fate, and, I had to strive just like everyone else to live it the best way possible, and possibly make something good out of it some day.
I am also not the “share my life” kind of girl. I am quiet and reserved. And I love that I am quiet. I guess this trait must have drawn me to asking the universe so many questions…. (Back then I spoke to the universe, not to God.) But thank God for being nosey! He saw my desire to connect with the infinite, or this Being that existed, which was beyond my reach, or —bigger than life itself—thus revealing Himself to me through His word, and correcting my misguided misconceptions of venerating the creation, rather than the Creator.
And so, even as I write this, I would like to emphasize that just because I am quiet does not make me a saint. I am far from a saint. I have done things, said things, and acted in ways that I am not proud of.
Once upon a time, yes, I did think myself to be saintly and even a good person. Until one day, when God began His work in me; and the Holy Spirit began revealing to me the corrupt state of my heart did my sins jump at me like I had never seen them before. The wickedness I had done in my life to others, the sinful desires in my heart, and many other things that if I were to write them all down I guess not even my journals or blog posts combined would be able to contain them.
Therefore, as I share on God’s grace in my life, this post as well seeks to assure that person who maybe thinks God does not care about them, has given up on them, or is not as concerned with them; that it is not so.
We have all made and keep making choices and decisions that we are not proud of. In the past, I beat myself up pretty hard when the choices I made burnt me and left me wounded. Whether the decision was visiting a certain place knowing very well of impending risks, a matatu I decided to board knowing instinctively that it was a bad idea, a person I allowed to influence the perception I had about myself, or even an amount of money I spent unwisely…., whatever it was; it was a choice I made.
And I thank God that I learnt from a young age that tossing blame was shady business. I had to own up, and deal with the consequences of my actions, if I ever needed to know the truth about myself. And I believe that this is partly where I got my perfectionist tendancies from.
I remember when God found me struggling in life, managing my life so terribly without Him, worries in-over my head, physical pain, dejected, and just at a loss of what my life was turning into. And in case, you are tempted to think this is some distant past, let me just inform you… this is only five years ago.
And so, as I began reading His word, He slowly began addressing some of my struggles as well, but I kept holding onto most of them for some reason. In retrospect, I now wonder, “What the hell was I thinking?” I guess as human beings we lie to ourselves that if we hold on to our despondent state a while longer, the narrative might change. What a lie from the enemy of progress. The devil plants seeds of defeatism mindset; recognizing a person who is still young in faith and seeking to grow in Christ, he tries to hinder any progress towards entering the full rest that God has promised to all His children.
And if any one of you my readers are at such a place in life today, I counsel you …. let go and let God. I promise it only gets better with every hold released to Jesus.
Anyway, this post today, is not about how broken and lost I was. I have focused on that for a long twenty plus years of my life. This post is about what happened in between, and that was, Jesus Christ.
When He found me in that broken state, He held me. He never condemned me, or made me feel like I was the worst failure to ever step upon the face of the earth. Alarmingly, I was the one participating in self-condemnation especially when I failed to live up to the bar that I desired in my heart to live up to.
But God, on the other side was different. He cheered me on. Slowly but progressively, He pointed out to me the areas that I was falling short in such gracious ways, and accompanied by my desire to change, He too, gave me the power to overcome and say no to the things that were pulling me down. Many times I fell miserably, but He was there, to lift me up and have a go at it again. Until I had gained victory over some vicious strongholds and cycles I had adopted and had been practicing in life for several years.
Like a loving father; He cheered me on.
And this gave me more strength and desire to keep going.
Think of a loving father; that joy he experiences when his child takes her first steps, or utters her first words. Though this child falls on her face as she attempts to make those first steps or utter those incomplete words, this father is extremely joyous for that milestone. He does not focus on how she fell or failed. “Tomorrow,” he says to the child, “we will try again”. And every day, with patience and love, they try and try and try and try, until finally, the child is up and running or able to communicate clear and fluent words. Such joy and gladness and celebration! That now, it is difficult to even get the child to stay in one place or stay silent for a minute. (This is me now always in your timelines telling you about Jesus:))
How much more can I describe this love? In what other way can I tell of this love?
Jesus in truth and in action is all I can say.
The kingdom that He brought down on this earth is a kingdom like no other. Unlike that of man where we can physically see it, His kingdom comes into a man and begins to flow into a person; and like rushing soothing waters, He begins clearing up all the debris of the past and allowing a person to commence life afresh, with new perspectives, shedding away old behaviors that enslaved him, and granting him a purposeful present and future.
A true personal experience that compels a person to share this newly discovered unconditional love by God with others. An encounter with Almighty God through Jesus; the born again experience. (And honestly, I really used to dislike the word born again, because of its poor misuse by people even up-to-date).
And this has been the story of my life for the past five years in a nutshell. A life of surrender, sometimes, picking up my baggage, but eventually learning to let go and let God.
I have found Jesus to be the best Master in the world. Having served other masters in my life previously, nothing can compare. A friend, a true best friend, a shoulder to lean on all throughout life; the person whom my very own breath depends. As a person, I can fail as a friend or best friend, but He has never failed me once, and I am convinced He will never fail any child He receives.
Every day, He showers me with the grace that I need for that particular day. Even when I am faithless, even when I find myself complaining about people and things I should be grateful for, even when I fail to show grace and love to others. Even when I give up on others, even in this imperfect state. In my worst of times, and with my lousy behaviors;
He still leads me (like the psalmist wrote), beside still waters. And these are not just words that I am writing for the sake of writing, or to make it appear as though I know the Psalms.
Jesus is truly patient with us. He is a Good Shepherd, a Loving Comforter, a Gracious King, a tender and faithful Master to all His servants; full of mercy.
But You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious, Longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth.
This fact makes me desire to be better; not for the sake of impressing Him, but because I don’t deserve His goodness yet He faithfully grants it.
Jesus is true; His word is living and active.
It is impossible for man to change another man even if he spent the whole of his life trying. Only God can change a man, from the inside out, into something beautiful; somebody peaceful and purposeful. Only God can see the wickedness of a man’s heart, and still show him grace, extending forgiveness to him. Only God can speak to a man’s spirit, teaching him, leading him into righteousness as the world goes about its business without recognizing this miracle. Not even man can change himself, for he is all the same a slave to this world.
Only God can bring about this new birth in a person; again, (the born again experience.)
And this is why this gospel is called the good news of grace. Because He restores what was broken and remoulds it back to reflect His own nature.
If God can see me in spite of my mess and still love me, still desire to have a relationship with me and desire to use me. That’s some type of love! Not Charlie Puth’s type of love.
And just the same, He desires to relate with every single person who has ever had life. To welcome them into the fullness of joy, and have a meaningful friendship with them despite all they might have done. All it takes is a humble heart and a desire for His help, and He will meet you at that point of need and lead you to Himself through Jesus Christ.
Certainly though, Jesus may come with a share of ridicule, people wondering about you, being thought of as this or that, and such like things…. but these things are nothing compared to the love, joy, peace, and rest He grants through the Holy Spirit as He keeps working in the spirit of the man who yields his will to Him. I forever count it a privilege to serve Him.
This healing Jesus. This beauty for ashes Jesus.
Featured Image Credit— Peijin’s Art on Pinterest