If I’ve realized anything, it’s one thing to ask the Lord into my life and recognize I’m saved through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice, but a completely different thing to mean it, embody it, and be transformed by it such that I genuinely live for Christ. Through Christ our sins are forgiven—we have peace with God, eternal assurance, purpose, and hope in a fallen world. In knowing Christ, I’ve hit the lottery, plain and simple. So why is it so easy for me to get wrapped up in materialistic, temporary, day-to-day things and become desensitized to the countless blessings I have in Christ? Why do I struggle to have His ultimate truth actually resonate with and transform me in a way that reflects the Lord’s love?
Undeservedly and unconditionally loved by the Lord, I yell and complain at a referee after a controversial call rather than extending him or her the same love. I stake my worth and fulfillment in my achievements and grades rather than the fact that I’m a loved, adopted child of the Lord. I put on a façade of respectfulness and genuine character for the glory of my own reputation rather than to reflect and glorify the Lord. Take a step back, breathe, who am I living for? So often I am sickened, embarrassed, frustrated by myself. What is wrong with me?
It is times like these that I am confronted by the true, unavoidable nature of my sinful existence. I’m squirming in frustration, self-resentment, and anger as I type. However, it is in these low moments of self-realization that I become that much closer to the Lord as I genuinely feel, all too rarely, blessed and energized to serve Him. How humbling and beautiful it is that the Lord uses the lowest of our lows and finds us in our darkest valleys to reveal His unconditional love.
Sometimes I wish the Lord would snap His fingers and fix me to love Him wholly and entirely, but that’s not how it works. Thank the Lord He doesn’t because He deserves nothing less! Such a solution would be a failure to genuinely pursue and love of the Lord. Sadly, my day will continue. This deep resonation with the Lord’s love will eventually be eclipsed by the many activities of my life as I once again fall prey to sinful thoughts, feelings, and actions. So here I humbly sit praying for the strength to be deeply humbled by my sinful nature for just a little bit longer than the last time.
John Massie was a Horizons Fellow from 2015-16.