Last night, I dreamed that my sister had a tiny bearded lizard as a pet and its cage was outside. The problem was, snakes were getting in the cage and trying to eat it. I went outside with a shovel and chopped off their heads.
Ok, sorry that was gross. Anyway, I am reading The Cure by Bill Thrall, Bruce McNicol and John Lynch and it is an excellent book. Last night I read chapter three where the main character (so to speak), begins to leave the Room of Grace and journey toward the Room of Good Intentions because he/she doesn’t feel deserving of the grace God has for her (I’m gunna go with “her” for now). She feels like she needs to go and beat herself up for failing again.
This situation seemed all too familiar to me. I often walk around in perpetual guilt just for the sake of proving that I do care about right and wrong and that I am not taking advantage of God’s grace to do whatever I want.
Here’s the amazing truth: When I choose to not beat myself up for failing, it doesn’t necessarily mean that I don’t care.
I do care and God knows it whether or not I put on the sad face that shows it. If I spend five seconds repenting and receiving His grace, knowing He has already taken the punishment for that sin, then that shows God that I not only care about my sin but I care about His love as well.
Easy enough. But then I read about how much God hates sin and I get back on the track of beating myself up again just to prove that I hate sin too. But here’s another thing I learned: I can hate sin without hating myself even if I just committed that sin because I can separate myself from association with that sin because of Christ.
Accepting God’s grace does not mean that I think the sin itself was no big deal but it means that I am no longer associated with that sin. I should not hold onto guilt for fear of apathy. I can still care about good and evil without brining myself into the equation.
Unfortunately, as soon as I let go of guilt, there is a voice that hisses, “You’re apathetic.” That voice needs to go away. There is absolutely nothing apathetic about accepting God’s grace.