My Consequence and My Pardon

I am a sinner saved by grace and in this present world, I will never be anything else. That doesn’t mean that the grace I’ve received is a cloak for evil. My profession of faith isn’t a ticket to sin without punishment. What I do avoid by my acceptance of Christ is what the Bible describes as the “second death”. I believe in Judgment Day and on that Day the pardon I’ve received through faith in Jesus will keep me safe from the final death of spirit and soul that I and all human beings deserve. Jesus didn’t die to make me a moral person. Jesus died to give me and anyone else who will accept it, eternal life. Jesus died in order to reunite God and man. Faith in Jesus isn’t a matter of morality. It is a matter of life or death. However, I am changed by having Jesus at the center of my life and my desire to sin is diminished by my greater desire to please God. The gift of eternal life is a morally transforming gift.

As a sinner saved by grace, I still suffer the consequences when I sin. Those consequences are natural and inescapable. No one is able to break God’s Law and avoid what those wrong actions create even if they escape human punishment. I have been sick for the better part of forty years now, due to a serious sin I committed against myself as a teenager. I have changed my life since then and there are those who love me and think that God is being very unfair toward me in allowing me to suffer for a mistake I made as a child. I know that if God hadn’t intervened in my life, I never would have been able to change my life, and I would most likely be dead, forever separated from God. My illness is simply the natural consequence attached to my sin and part of my cross to bear. Others doubt my faith or think I suffer needlessly because my faith is weak but my faith doesn’t come from me. It too is a gift from God and the consequences I endure prove the durability of my precious gift. Without Christ, I would be a physically broken bitter old woman. With Christ, I am a physically broken joyful old woman. All that should have embittered me has taught me empathy and opened many doors into the lives of others that enable me to share God’s love and comfort with my fellow, suffering sinners. The consequence of my foolish actions keeps me humble and in a position that allows God to work through me more effectively. I endure because I know ultimately, my healing is coming. Because Jesus died for me, I will physically die only once, and I will rise again to live with Him in a better world.

As a sinner saved by grace, I also suffer as a result of the sins of others. In fact, some of those sins are what drove me, as a child, to use drugs. However, I am still accountable for my actions as those who hurt me are accountable for theirs. The sin I committed against myself hurt me, hurt the people who loved me, hurt the people who love me now, and most of all hurt my Heavenly Father. My sin put Jesus on the cross and His physical sacrifice made it possible for me to be granted forgiveness from God. In the same way, I a sinner must forgive those who sinned against me. That doesn’t mean they will accept my forgiveness by taking responsibility for their actions. I can’t do their part of restoring our relationship. I can’t force what even God doesn’t force upon others. It does mean that I pardon them just as in Christ I am pardoned. I am unable to do this on my own but because Jesus lives in me by faith, the Holy Spirit enables me to do what is humanly impossible.

This is what the cross means personally, to me. I know it sounds very foolish to most but that is the power and the ultimate wisdom of the cross of Christ. True foolishness is to reject the free gift of eternal life by denying the price Jesus paid to obtain it and then offer it freely to all who will believe. True foolishness is to deny the fallen state of mankind and our need for God. We can never be Him and will only die trying. My prayer during this time of year when the world considers the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus is that eyes and hearts will be opened to realize the need for salvation found only, at the foot of the cross of Christ. Please, accept your pardon today.

 

 


32 thoughts on “My Consequence and My Pardon

  1. Great testimony! We all have those hidden sins that continue to haunt, but when we remember that God is in control of our new life in Him, we can do anything!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Sometimes we bring trouble on ourselves, but a lot of times trouble finds us when it’s not our fault. It happened, for example, to a man named Job. Three friends told him, “You’re getting what you deserve, ’cause God doesn’t make mistakes.” God made sure that Job and his friends knew that his friends were wrong. I thank God that he turned you away from your youthful mistakes and that he has given you strength to bear the burden he has allowed. And I’m glad that you know that all your sins are forgiven and all the world’s evil has been defeated. Yes, this is a good week to remember these things. J.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. None of us get out of this world without some suffering deserved and undeserved but everything is more bearable with Jesus. He used this disease to bring me to my knees and He’s continued to use it to tutor me throughout my life. Of course, if He should decide to glorify Himself in me by a miraculous healing, I’d take that too! But whatever He decides, it’s not about me it’s about Him. I’m glad Jesus is the center of your life too. God bless.

      Liked by 4 people

  3. Pam this is a very powerful post. I hope and pray that the Lord would really use this to minister to others. And also evangelize the lost. What a testimony. I can’t imagine 40 years of the same physical ailments.
    The most powerful line that stood out to me in this post was when you said “Without Christ, I would be a physically broken bitter old woman. With Christ, I am a physically broken joyful old woman.” What a powerful contrast. I had to stop a few times and consider the weight of those words.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hi Jim, my disease has been slowly, progressive. God used it to bring me to my knees initially, and He’s used it many times to draw me closer to Him. Not all of my life has been misery, He’s given me many good things over the years but overall, I know my long struggle with my health would have made me very bitter by now if Jesus weren’t the center of my life. The only difference in me from the world is Jesus.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I hope I get well enough to be able to endure church soon. They keep the a.c. on almost year round now and refrigerated a.c. I can’t tolerate for more than about 15 minutes. So…enjoy for me too.:0)

        Like

      1. I greatly hate this new system wordpress has put in. Trying to sell the it they steal our written replies, scoot us over to the new to comply with it. Sorry Pam, I’m fed up with it.
        But thank you Pam, Happy Resurrection Day to you as well (or alone, disregarding my frustration). And thanks for the blessing. Again I apologize for my frustration express.

        Liked by 1 person

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