I feel like I should be sorry, but I’m not really.
I know it might look like I’m angry or ambivalent or something, but I’m really really not.
Please don’t take my quiet consideration as judgement or condemnation, a bad attitude, or a warning sign.
It’s just that several months ago now, I made myself a promise. A promise that has changed my life, the way I think about other people and the way I think about my faith.
I promised I would start thinking and stop lying.
And that’s why, on Sunday? When we sang that sassy song about how changed we are because we’re Christians, I didn’t sing most of the words.
I’m a sassy girl. I love sass.
It just doesn’t feel right in my worship songs. I don’t like sass when it comes to the blood of Jesus. And I think it’s because it hits too close to home for me. Please don’t hear me saying this song is bad. All I’m saying is that I can’t sing it right now.
See, I know how it goes with me. For me, that sass quickly turns into pride, into me thinking that I somehow earned or deserved my salvation and my righteousness. Into me thinking of the world as us and them, not people covered by the blood of Jesus, but people separated by our behaviors and our beliefs. It turns into a teenage girl who filled journals with arrogant words because she didn’t know what it meant to be grateful for the Gospel. It turns into a woman who thinks she deserves something from God.
And that’s why, church. When we sing that song, I’m not going to sing along. It’s because I know my own heart, I know that it’s prone to wander.
It’s because when I see the words “I won’t go back again/That’s just not who I am” on the screen, my heart breaks a little and a tear falls down my cheek because I know that the opposite is true.
I will go back again.
That’s exactly who I am.
And Jesus knows it, too. Better than I do. And his grace extends to me anyway. His righteousness covers me anyway.
So please give me grace. Because I’m still learning how to live this way. I still feel like I’m playing “Real or Not Real” with everything I know about Jesus and the Bible and what it means to really follow Christ. And if I’m going to be faithful to the work that God is doing, that means thinking and no more lies.
It means I don’t have to pretend that God’s grace extended to me when I “was” a sinner, but that I now keep my end of the bargain, so I’m basically ok. Because I don’t. And I’m not.
And it means that I don’t have to pretend that my sinful heart always wants what God wants, that I don’t have the assurance I will never doubt or make mistakes or choose the wrong thing.
I am finding that to truly live in the good of the Gospel, I have to first accept the fact that I’m sinful, through and through. There’s no good in me, and there’s no use pretending like there is.
But in Jesus? All the treasure, all the good, all the freedom.
Let me be confident in Jesus, and his powerful hands to hold me, not in my ability to follow him.