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Monday, February 20, 2017

To the One Who Has Lost it

To understand this post, please click HERE to read the first part.

The Aftermath

I remember sitting on the floor of my room on several nights, wallowing in regret and self inflicted pain. I had the opportunity to stop but I felt I needed to stay. I "owed" him. I fell face down to the floor one night and I told God I was done. I was done being a prisoner to my own flesh. My identity was broken and I had no idea who I was anymore. I never understood what it meant to need God up until that moment.
I remember listening to some of my friends talk about how they were still "whole" and I walked about with my half self. Even in church circles, the non-virgins were separated from the virgins. Not literally, but you do sense a separation when every gathering celebrated the ones who still had it and left the others to deal with their "incompleteness" Oh the lies of the enemy!

You see, my then boyfriend walking away from me was a blessing in disguise.That was the only way the veil could be lifted from my eyes. I know for many,this may not be the reality.You may even believe you are "in love" and you have managed to convince yourself that you'll marry that guy anyway. Or maybe for you, you have gotten to the point where this sin has become a norm to you, you have become numb to the nudging of the Holy Spirit. You have sex Saturday night, dust your skirt on Sunday and head to church like it's nothing . Whatever the case, I hope God highlights the area you need to begin walking down the road of repentance and continue in sanctification.

To The One Who Gave it Away 

Before writing this post, I prayed Ephesians 1:18 for you
"I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength"
You may be tempted to continue in sin and just say "what's the point?" That is exactly what the enemy wants you to do. Do you not know who our God is? Before you made that mistake of slipping, He knew and He loved you regardless. Can you imagine someone loving you that much? To the point where He has seen ALL of your flaws and chooses to love you still. All He wants is your submission, he wants to take you under His arm, protect you from the consequences that comes with sin. You have a choice to respond to that or say Nah.

I've heard it all:
"Once you start you can't stop" "Sex is an addiction" "Sex is like air,you need it to survive" ALL LIES. See, these are all beautiful lies craftily molded by the enemy into the minds of young people to keep them on a leash. He knows how much power lies within us as God's children and the only way he can keep us from releasing that power is by making sure our fellowship with God remains broken and unrestored. He comes only to kill, to steal and to destroy.

To the One who Had it Taken Away

You are not a second class Christian; you have an equal inheritance in Christ. You may feel something precious has been taken away from you but it is not your most priced possession. The most valuable thing you have is the salvation bought for you through the blood of Christ and that, my sister, can never ever be taken away from you. Your hurt,pain and disappointments have become tools in the hands of your maker to mold you into a beautiful vessel for His glory. Turn your scars into tattoos of grace and stand boldly before the throne of grace. He is the God who calls the lost, weary, prostitute, destitute, oppressed and abandoned to dine at His table. God is near to those who call him in truth, so shout at the top of your lungs and beg for restoration. That baggage you carry, the heavy laden, release it at the feet of Christ and let Him hold your hands and walk you down the road of restoration.You are loved with an ever lasting love and I hope you believe that without a shadow of doubt.

"There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death."- Romans 8: 1-2
That passage above, is the only reason I was able to share my story with you. It is the only reason I can confidently tell you that what you have done or where you have been has very little to do with where God is taking you. You need to know this and find your identity in it. I need to warn you though. The enemy will come, with lies in different forms, shapes and sizes.He will want to break you, tear you apart and make you want to crawl back into your hole. I want you to recognize them as lies because the truth is right there in Romans 8. You will never be able to experience the joy of freedom in Christ until you begin to see yourself the way He sees you.

Paul- Helped murder numerous Christians (Acts)
Rahab- Prostitute (Joshua 2)
Moses- Stutterer and also murdered ( Exodus 2)
David- Committed adultery and murdered ( 2 Samuel 11)
I point you to these people's past and I urge you to go read the stories of how God used them in many different ways.

I know I made things sound a little too easy earlier; they're not. I understand some of your struggles. Are the temptations still real? YES. Is there a chance of slipping back into sexual sin? YES. I know there have been way too many nights when my thoughts are filled with lustful desires. I have had to battle the weirdest and sometimes very annoying images. Some pictures appear more vividly in your memory than they should and sometimes you feel so weak you can't even fight it. Maybe some of us may have to deal with this more than others but you are NOT alone. Never let the enemy lock you up in a box by yourself. More importantly, Christ empathizes with us in our struggles with sin (Hebrews 4:15) and He wants to pour out a truck load of grace to help us through those times. This is the time to depend on God more than any other thing. I want you to focus on the size of your God not the weight of your struggles; you'd be surprised at how small they become over time.

Stop the Culture of Silence
"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us."- Romans 8:18 
Find someone you can trust to share your struggles with. Speak to God every opportunity you get and let Him speak to you by being buried in His word.  The battle we fight is not against flesh and blood (Ephesians 6: 12). Who ever lied to us that Christianity equals perfection? Whoever told us that the church is the place to have it altogether 100% of the time? We are all broken pieces, held together by the glue of a grace so amazing and we'd be doomed to think of ourselves otherwise. Please, let us quit the picture perfect and build a safe space for people to be comfortable enough to share their struggles. This will run the enemy mad because he enjoys watching us suffer in silence. Let our church communities be committed to sharing the pure,undiluted truth of the word with their members. We do ourselves no good by living in a bubble of pseudo-perfection. 

I found this ARTICLE from desiring God that may be helpful in putting things more into perspective for you.

Finally, I'd love to pray with you and please feel free to say this prayer as well. 

Heavenly Father, we are your children and it is such a privilege to bear that name. It is such an honor to know that we are beneficiaries of your great and precious promises. We are thankful that we can be weak and broken without any condemnation because even in these, your strength is made all the more perfect. We can be weak because you are strong! We are oh so thankful that we are not defined by our pasts and we can trust that you are big enough to handle them. Lord I pray for everyone reading this, those who have been hurt in any way, that you restore to them the joy of your salvation and give them the boldness to rise above their fears, hurt and shame. I pray for those who are afraid or believe they are too far gone to return, Father, please show them that there is no such thing as too far gone in your book. Help them to desire more of you and let the Holy Spirit work with them in the areas they are struggling with. For I pray these through Christ our Lord. Amen. 

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