I can tell you without hesitation that the last year, and the last four months in particular, have proved the most challenging, transitional, and interesting months I have ever experienced! Throughout these last few months, I have learned so much: about God, about His Word, and about His people.
One of the truths I have been realizing anew is that of the Gospel.
And yes, I understood and believed the Gospel before my last post...
However, I am starting to see the Gospel's truths more clearly, and I can only attribute this to God and His mercy! Here are just a few of the truths about the Gospel that He has either taught me or reminded me of afresh:
~The Gospel is completely and utterly incomprehensible! The fact that God the Father would allow His Son to dwell with filthy, contaminated, sin-infested humans, and then to die a cruel and painful death for those humans, makes absolutely no sense!
Romans 5:8--"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."~The excruciating physical pain that Christ experienced on our behalf is not the only or even the primary point that should bring us to our knees. The most awe-inspiring truth is that every individual sin of every human being who ever lived, lives, or will live, was placed on a pure and perfect God. He bore all of my sins in that one moment on the cross, and God the Father turned His face away from His Son. All for me and you.
1 Peter 2:24--"He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed."~Christ's resurrection completely and permanently dissolved sin's power over me. There is no condemnation, no restricted access to His throne, no fear in my relationship with Him.
Hebrew 4:16--"Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."
Colossians 2:13-14--"When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross."~The Gospel affects every aspect of my life. My worldview, my every decision, my every action, should be driven by my awareness of God's mercy and by the fact that the Gospel grants me "everything [I] need for life and godliness."
2 Peter 1:3--"His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness."~When I become discouraged or overwhelmed by some challenge or trial, I only need to remember that Christ already took care of my biggest problem, that of sin and separation from Him, and that I can confidently place my trust in His control.
Hebrews 2:14-18--"Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham's descendants. For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted."How awesome is His mercy, and how AMAZING is His grace!
I want to encourage you: keep praying that God would increase your appreciation for and understanding of the Gospel! He is answering my prayer, and in doing so, He is giving me joy and a renewed love for our incredible God!