Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Mad Dash to...Forgiveness

Last night I was worked until close to 1am. I was crazy tired when I got home. As I cuddled up to my husband, he told me he would let me sleep in in the morning. By that I thought he meant somewhere in the neighborhood of 7am (seeing that's late for a morning that I have to work). To my surprise, I woke up at 8:21! I jumped out of my bed and scrambled to the bathroom to get ready. "Arlen," I shouted, "I was supposed to be at work 20 minutes ago!" All of a sudden it was a mad dash to get me ready for work. As Arlen patiently gathered the items I called out, "I need my work shirt, and khakis, and an undershirt, and some socks...Ahhhh! I can't find my ID card," together, we got me out the door, and I arrived at work at 8:31!

Needless to say, when I arrived at work, I was very sleepy and a bit bemuddled, but as I sat and spent time talking to Jesus, I realized something. It is so clear that He has been working in my life. My typical response to being so late to work would be first to snap at Arlen for not getting me up earlier, then to beat up on myself for all of the ways that I could have possibly slipped up to make such a thing happen. I would have droned on and on about how irresponsible I am and would have let it ruin my day. Yet, Jesus calmed me.

Yes, being late to work would mean that I would miss that pay for the day. Being late might mean that I would get in trouble at work. Being late meant that I didn't get a shower before coming to work and that breakfast would be late. I would have some consequences. However, that's not where it ended. I was already late when I woke up, I could not change that, so I decided I would do my best to get to work as fast as I could - and I did. Arlen had not made a mistake, there was simply a misunderstanding, so why blame Him? When it all comes down to it, this is what I really discovered. I cannot continually beat myself up for every mistake I make. I must take responsibility for my slip ups, and accept whatever consequences go along with them, but then I must learn from them and move on.

Then, suddenly I was hit with a better understanding of God's love and forgiveness. When we sin, there are consequences, there is no way around that. However, rather than beating ourselves up and gloating, we can learn from those mistakes, allow them to help us grow, and move on. Christ has covered our sins and has fully forgiven us. He wants us to live like His forgive children.

I can't help but wonder if this is what Jesus was talking about in Matthew 11:28-30 when He said,
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

This is me at work - Thrown together, but forgiven!

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