Updated: Sep 14
“In Him, we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace, which He lavished on us.” (Ephesians 1:7)
There was a time, long ago, when an insane person’s hand slapped me into spiritual oblivion. I was young and naïve. He had me cornered and he knew it. He belonged to a group of people who missed the mark, killing tiny seeds of faith, hope and trust, not seeing suffering souls who had shown up seeking refuge and redemption. This holier-than-thou nutcase used parts of my past against me. Sometimes, he made things up to suit his purpose. He psychologically and physically tortured me, making my life a living hell. Judging and condemning, my life became subject to a sentence of constant, painfilled oppression. I ended up in a shelter shielding women who were escaping violent situations.
So, where was the redemption the nuns taught in school? I struggled to find the answer. What washes away the sins of our past once and for all? Was I being punished for the “big sins” and there was no hope for me? I finally came to know the answer: Absolutely nothing except the blood of Jesus. Either that’s true or it’s not. If the blood of Jesus does not wash away all of our sins completely, then we’re all in a lot of trouble. If it only washes away the “little” sins, what good is that?
He lavishes his unlimited grace on us when we come to Him – no matter what! When I realized that our Beloved Redeemer shed His own blood to secure our forgiveness, it bound my heart in love to Him. It made me hate sin and strive to stay away from the near occasion of it all the more. It gives me permission to walk away from mean people no matter who they are or who they pretend to be.
There are times I cannot fathom loving myself as much as Jesus loves me. I think about my many flaws and problems and sins throughout my life. Then, my heart says, “If my Creator can delight in His creation of me, I suppose I need to pay attention to this.” I crumple in tears, throwing my hands up in the air in total and complete resignation. That is exactly the moment when the Miracle happens: He takes hold of my hands, steadies me and helps me up to walk again. Who am I to not forgive myself when my Creator has already forgiven me? Am I foolish enough to think I know better than God Himself?
Thank You, dear Father God Almighty, for sending your beloved Son, Jesus, to save us from ourselves. Thank You for the gift of Your riches and of Your grace. Thank you for Your forgiveness! Amen