A friend was sharing a story of a woman. This woman was a spiritual giant. She was co-pastor of a church. She had the perfect life, perfect marriage. And, then, she committed adultery with someone in ministry. After going through a devastating divorce and being dismissed from the church, Jesus told her to get up and follow Him (again). Meanwhile, everyone around her looked on with eyes that said, “Don’t you dare get up! Who do you think you are that you should be able to move on peacefully after what you’ve done? You haven’t paid enough. You don’t deserve to get up from the ashes and have a good life. You fell and we’re going to remind you of it everyday of your life.”
Have you ever felt this way?
Let’s see what Jesus says.
6 When Jesus saw him and knew he had been ill for a long time, he asked him, “Would you like to get well?”
7 “I can’t, sir,” the sick man said, “for I have no one to put me into the pool when the water bubbles up. Someone else always gets there ahead of me.”
8 Jesus told him, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and walk!”
9 Instantly, the man was healed! He rolled up his sleeping mat and began walking! But this miracle happened on the Sabbath, 10 so the Jewish leaders objected. They said to the man who was cured, “You can’t work on the Sabbath! The law doesn’t allow you to carry that sleeping mat!”
11 But he replied, “The man who healed me told me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’” (John 5:6-11, NLT)
Which one are you?
Has God told you to get up and walk again?
Or, are you the Pharisee glaring with unforgiving eyes and saying, “Don’t you dare move.”
Chances are that, like me, you’ve been both. But, we have the power to both accept God’s forgiveness, pick up our mat and walk and the ability to show grace and mercy to our sister or brother and encourage them to get up from the ashes and do the same.
God can redeem and restore anyone. Who am I to make them pay a thousand times? God doesn’t do that to me. And, He doesn’t do that to you.
And he has taken our sins as far away from us as the east is from the west. (Psalm 103:12, ERV)
I rejoice in the fact that He takes away my sins. I don’t have to pay for them day after day, unless I choose to. In case you didn’t know, God sent His son so that you can live a life of joy and peace. Being chained to your past mistakes doesn’t qualify. And, chaining other people to their mistakes is also no-no.
Sister, it doesn’t matter what you did.
It doesn’t matter who you were.
God knows who you are. He created you. And, He knows the plans He has for you!
God said, “I have heard your cry. I have forgiven you. I have healed you. Get up. Walk.”
And, I’m encouraging you to do just that.
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