Today, I am so excited to introduce our guest blogger, Jodi White! Jodi is a mighty woman of God and a phenomenal writer! To learn more about Jodi, be sure to read her blogger (abbreviated) bio at the bottom of this post. Get ready, you are in for a blessing!
Have you ever found yourself in a place of weakness? Helpless to overcome some sin in your life? Completely stuck to the point of nearly losing all hope? Unable to free yourself from something that has hold of you? Sin has a way of doing that to us. It promises power. Power to have our own way. Power to find joy and fulfillment. Power to feel loved and affirmed. We may experience those things for a time in a pseudo kind of way, but before we know it we wake up to chains around our ankles, invisible to others perhaps, but real nonetheless. How did this happen? You find yourself asking, “How did I get here”? As we look into the mirror of God’s Word, our life experience confirms its truth. Always. It tells us this about the power of sin:
It has the power to steal my joy. In Psalm 51, the Psalm that David wrote upon his conviction of sin with Bathsheba, he says, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation.” When involved in the pleasure of sin, he was temporarily unaware of all that he would be losing, not the least of which was JOY.
It has the power to deceive me and to harden my heart. The prophet Isaiah speaks of a deluded heart that leads us astray to the point that we will “feed on ashes” rather than feasting at God’s table. The writer of Hebrews exhorts us to encourage one another daily, lest our hearts be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
It has the power to isolate me from God and others. Just as sin drove a wedge between Adam and God and led him to point the blame on his wife, sin pushes us from fellowship with God and others. We have too much to hide to be open and receiving of others.
It has the power to give Satan an advantage over me. He stalks as a lion to pick off the weak, casting his accusations in my face, as I hang my head shamefully acknowledging my guilt.
In this state, I am overwhelmed, frightened, and at the brink of despair. Is this the end for me? It would be, if it were not for another power. A higher power. A limitless power. A power that is greater than ALL my sin. God’s Word not only describes my symptoms, causes and effects, but it gives me the remedy. In order to discover it, I must look outside of myself. Where is the power? His Book tells me:
There is power in faith. Faith is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8). Faith causes me to reach out to Him, believing that God is full of mercy and takes compassion on the broken. Faith connects me with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, believing that He sacrificed Himself for MY sin that I might be set free from its guilt and power.
There is power in acknowledgment of our guilt before God and our need of the cleansing that only He can provide. David said, “Against You and You only have I sinned and done this evil in Your sight.” “You are right, God, and I am wrong. Terribly wrong.”
There is power in confession. God tells us that He draws near to the broken heart (Psalm 51:17) and that if we come to Him in humble confession, He will hear and forgive us. (I John 1:9). There is cleansing and healing that comes with pouring out our heart before God, hoping in His limitless store of mercy.
There is power in forgiveness. I have said many times that I would not have the courage or hope to go on if it were not for forgiveness. God promised that if His people would humble themselves, pray and turn from their sin that He would grant healing and forgiveness (2 Chronicles 7:14). Our hope is not in ourselves, but in the very character of God, Who always keeps His promises and loves to show mercy and forgiveness.
There is power in grace. Grace by definition is a kindness that is granted to an undeserving recipient. When we experience the grace of God in faith, in confession and in forgiveness, it empowers us to walk free from our sin, have communion with God and to extend that grace to others.
This is a sure hope that stirs our souls and binds our hearts in love to this great and gracious God who sets the prisoner free. Is your heart heavy being chained by sin? Take hope and look to the One who is greater. “…the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”
Blogger Bio: Jodi is a pastor's wife, mother of 8, grandmother of a growing brood, writer, teacher, and speaker serving in south Texas with her husband, Kyle. She is a rescued sinner who loves to share the hope-filled message of God's amazing grace and forgiveness with others.
To check out more from Jodi, visit strivingheavenward.com
Until next time, let Him heal your soul!
Your Sister in Christ,
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank you for forgiveness of all of my sins. I am so grateful that you are the greatest source of power. Teach me to trust in you and tap into the power that only you can provide. In Jesus' Mighty Name I pray, Amen.