I Really Want to be Like Jesus…

I really want to be like Jesus…

Instead, I disappoint my friends, speak harsh words, and let the dumbest things get me off track.

It was one of those days. By lunchtime I was in tears over the ways I had failed. I flopped on the couch at our Take Heart office, totally discouraged.

Then my eyes drifted up to a picture on our wall, one of the framed pieces we’d used in our prayer chapel:

enterhisrest Enter His rest. Be still in His silence. Be renewed in His quiet.

As I read these calming words, I began to feel the peace of Christ wash over me, reminding me of the forgiveness that is available to all who ask.

I was reminded that God called us to Himself “while we were yet sinners.”(Romans 5:8) When Jesus said “come to me all you who are weary and burdened,” he didn’t say we had to get it right before we came.

In fact, he was calling to the discouraged. To people like me who start the day by the Spirit and too easily slip into the habits of the flesh.

I closed the office door, eased back down into the couch, and the tears that fell became tears of gratitude for the love of a Good Father. One whose arms are always open. One who calls us to be renewed in His Presence. One who readies us to go out again, to work out our salvation, learning to be like Jesus one moment at a time.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matt:11:28-30

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On a High Horse

Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Luke 6:37

I’ve spent a great deal of time lately on my high horse. Maybe you’ve ridden one too—you know, the seat where we sit proudly in judgment of those around us.

I’ve judged folks for their arrogance; I’ve judged others for their ignorance. Sometimes my judgment has come from a place of hurt, when someone let me down or failed to respond with love. And in each case, there was wrong done, so I felt justified.

Until I caught a glimpse of my own reflection.

There I saw my own arrogance. And ignorance. I thought of the recent times I had let others down and failed to act in love.

And I remembered today’s verse. I remembered the forgiveness I had taken for granted, yet had failed to grant.

concrete-crossI remembered that only One Person ever earned the right to sit on a high horse. Yet instead of being lifted high on a horse, He allowed Himself to be lifted high on a cross.

Dear Heavenly Father, forgive us, we pray, for the times we sit in judgment of those around us. As we remember your sacrifice for us this Holy week, as we celebrate the forgiveness you earned for us, may Your Spirit enable us to freely offer forgiveness to others. In Jesus Name, Amen.

By Sandy MacMillan, Take Heart Director

 

Photo courtesy of Magnus Rosendahl/Public-domain-photos.com