So in the New Testament there's this guy named Paul. He's not THE guy... THE guy in the N.T. is Jesus. But Paul's one of the most important people ever cause he's like the spark that ignites the world with the grace of God. We find out that he starts off, not the guy with the halo shimmering over his head and a pencil (or a quill) in his hand, writing books in the Bible. No, we find out that he's a murderer... a bigot... a self made enemy of God... kind of a total loser. And I think that's why we all identify with him. "Been there, done that too Paul." Or for some of us, "Felt that, thought that too Paul." Now I'm only (highlight only) 40, but I have learned one thing in my ripe young age... we are all the same.
I walked into a room at a Pastors conference once and there was this couple working together as unto the Lord. They were ridiculously beautiful. I don't just mean the light of Jesus was shining through there very faces (which it was.) I mean they were like super model gorgeous. I had to cover my eyes. I stumbled backwards mumbling something... I still have no idea what I said... but I was unable to function normally around that much beauty. What do I know for sure? That couple was the same as Paul, the murderous bigot... the same as Beth the ______ _______. (None of your business.)
Rotten to the core... every last one of us. The Bible says that our best is nothing but pathetic and gross compared to God's best. So when Paul, a guy whose garbage is familiar to us, says "All things are permissible, but not profitable." We gotta imagine he's lived it all. He's sinned in darkness and he's sinned in the light. What were the some of the highlights he taught?
No matter how good your intentions and how hard you try, you're flesh is still gonna lead you to sin.
No matter how many times you fail, God will forgive you, based only on His love for you.
No matter what you do, you can't earn God's grace (eternal life and forgiveness of sins.)
You are WANTED. You are CALLED. You are LOVED. You can't CHANGE that.
So following Him, (something I don't have the ability to do without His gift of faith) becomes not just a choice, but a reaction to His gorgeous love. I can't look upon His glory... not here on this earth while I am still an Ork, but I can easily detect His love for me if only I am willing to look upon it. I am SHELTERED. I am CLOTHED. I am FED. I am BREATHING. I can even see a few friends and family members around if I look hard enough. I will always fail, I will always fall... and He will always love me. Not because of my beauty, but because of His!!!