Friday, June 25, 2010

The Room of Grace

John Lynch has a message he gives on the Room of Good Intentions vs. the Room of Grace.  In my own past experience, I thought Christianity was a place of me trying to do the best I could (with God's help of course).  I lived in the realm of good intentions and regret, promises made and broken, and self-effort and failure for most of my Christian life.   What a relief when God showed me that Christianity isn't a place of self-effort to get or stay on God's good side (law) but a place where we are unconditionally loved and accepted for free (grace).  I always felt that God was not pleased with me, that He was demanding more from me, that He was disappointed with me, that He was pointing out my need for improvements, that He felt I wasn't good enough.  Yet God was looking on me with love, acceptance and grace the whole time, seeing me as righteous as His Son.  John Lynch shares God's true heart toward us so well in this quote from the book TrueFaced (thanks to Julie of Jewelz Sightings for sending this quote to me):

"We discover in The Room of Grace that the almost unthinkable has happened.  God has shown all of His cards.  He reveals a breathtaking protection that brings us out of hiding.  In essence, God says.......

'What if I tell them who they are?  What if I take away any element of fear in condemnation, judgment or rejection?  What if I tell them I love them, will always love them?  That I love them right now, no matter what they've done, as much as I love my only Son?  That there's nothing they can do to make my love go away?"

'What if I tell them there are no lists?  What if I tell them I don't keep a log of past offenses, of how little they pray, how often they've let me down, made promises they don't keep?  What if I tell them they are righteous, with my righteousness, right now?  What if I tell them they can stop beating themselves up?  That they can stop being so formal, stiff, and jumpy around me?  What if I tell them I'm crazy about them? ...
   
'What if I tell them that if I am their Savior, they're going to heaven no matter what - it's a done deal?  What if I tell them they have a new nature - saints, not saved sinners who should not 'buck-up and be better if they were any kind of Christians, after all he's done for you!  What if I tell them that I actually live in them now?  That I've put my love, power, and nature inside of them, at their disposal?  What if I tell them that they don't have to put on a mask?  That it is ok to be who they are at this moment, with all their junk.  That they don't need to pretend about how close we are, how much they pray or don't, how much Bible they read or don't.  What if they knew they don't have to look over their shoulder for fear if things get too good, the other shoes gonna drop?"

'What if they knew I will never, ever use the word punish in relation to them?  What if they knew that when they mess up, I will never get back at them?  What if they were convinced that bad circumstances aren't my way of evening out the score for taking advantage of me? What if they knew the basis of our friendship isn't how little they sin, but how much they let me love them?  ...

'What if I tell them there is no secret agenda, no trapdoor?  What if I tell them it isn't about their self-effort, but about allowing me to live my life though through them?'"
                                          
                               from the book TrueFacedby John Lynch

3 comments:

  1. This really touched me. I recently accepted Jesus Christ as my savior and Lord. Lately I have been struggling though....realizing just how much "junk" I have and how sinful I can be has had me down. I have issues relating to sexual abuse as a child and STRUGGLE. They make me feel horrible and have given me a good deal of issues to boot. Realizing that the Lord is not judging me, looking down upon me, or is disgusted with me gives me great relief. Feeling like I have his love and grace no matter what fills my heart with joy. Thanks so much for the blog....you reached somone today. :)

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  2. Dear Anonymous,

    God is so very pleased with you, delighted in you, and proud of you. You are beautiful in His eyes and a treasure!

    I know what you mean about His grace and love filling the heart with joy! He is so wonderful, isn't He?

    In Him,
    Sparrow

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  3. Yes, He is Sparrow. Thanks so much, the view you gave me of God is amazing. I have struggled with forgiveness and inner turmoil for the longest time. A couple nights ago in my men's group bible study someone discussed the "grace room" and the "room of good intentions" and it really hit me hard. I had been in the room of good intentions and wearing a mask...and that wasn't working for me. The grace room seemed like where I wanted to be and belonged, filled with people that accept themselves as imperfect sinners and still knew God loved them. My mask was seperating me God, I am glad I took it off. Your blog helped me do that....so thanks, from the bottom of my heart.

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May the amazing grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, and the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. 2 Co. 13:14