Meet the six ladies of the first class of the Bluegrass Fellows Program. Yesterday we were commissioned and our church got to meet us and put faces to our names. What a joy to get to meet more people at church and feel the excitement, love, and support.
The past 4 weeks have been challenging. No way around that. But I am so thankful to have these 5 other women who are walking beside me, and how humbling to know that we have a Fellows board who prays for us regularly and an entire church that is behind us, supporting us and wanting to see us grow and succeed.
Since we were commissioned at both services, we heard the sermon twice. And it was great! We just might start going to both services every week 😉 But really, what a great sermon to take in twice. I am like Jethro Gibbs (of NCIS, for those of you who are missing out 🙂 ) and believe that there are no coincidences in life.
As humans we (at least I do) feel failure so deeply and then feel like a failure (experience transferred to concept of self). The sermon on faith was so appropriate. I fail at seeking the Lord and having faith. The object of my faith is the important thing, not the strength of my faith. Good works don’t save us, neither does the strength of our faith. The object of my faith is Jesus Christ and He is unchanging and all-powerful (or as we would say in Spanish, “todopoderoso”). He is the One who is strong and has it all together, not me. It matters not whether I have a really pure day or a really sinful day – God is still God and He is still my Savior. My purest days need as much saving as my most sinful days. Yes, I desire to be faithful to God and to desire Him and run to Him daily, but He is the One who is always faithful and does the saving, so nothing is dependent upon me. I just need to keep running to Him with my doubts, joy, dirt, confusion, unfaithfulness, sin, guilt.
Maybe I am at my best when I feel weak, dirty, hopeless, unfaithful, and full of doubts and go crawling to my unchanging Savior.
Maybe God cares less about the state I am in and more about the fact that I’m running to Him.
So it matters not whether or not I trust Him 100% or 25% on any given day. He’s the same and I am loved, forgiven, and saved the same.
The crux of the sermon was Mark 9:24, in which a man cries out to Jesus, “I do believe! Help my unbelief!” Is that not every Christian ever?! So similar to what I think so frequently: “I want to want God, but I don’t always want Him. Help me to want You, Lord!” Some days I don’t believe, I don’t have faith in God. And again, it’s okay. There’s help for that. God is still God and He saves me just the same. If my salvation was contingent upon my believing in God 100% every single day, I would be in big trouble. But it’s not and it never has been. From God’s point of view, even my days of wanting and trusting in Him 100% are still pretty feeble and in need of a Savior.
As you may know, music speaks to me like nothing else can. Matt Wertz is one of my top favorite artists and his song “Running Back to You” is beautiful. Listen to the link at the bottom (because as I’ve said, the magic of songs is lyrics paired with music). Just check out these lyrics:
Maybe you’ll always learn the hard way.
Maybe the only way is through.
That after all the dust is settled,
You’re the only thing I know is true.
Either way, either way
I am running back to you, running back to you.
Right away, right away
Got me running back to you, running back to you.
Lately surrender isn’t willing
But it’s surrender all the same
All the spaces you’ve been filling
After I’m the one who ran away
Where I’ve been all these years with you beside me
I can’t believe that you can love me all the same
How far I’ve run, who I’ve become, you’ll always find me
After all I’m the one who ran away”
Jesus pursues me so I run back to Him again and again. Even in my running back to God, He’s the One who’s got me running back to Him, He finds me and draws me to run back into His arms. I’m going to press on as best as I can (which hasn’t been very good recently) to know God, knowing that I will not do so perfectly or 100% all the time. And God knows that and is okay with it.
“So let us know, let us press on to know the Lord.” -Hosea 6:3