Today I failed. I was harsh and sinned in anger toward my daughter. The details don’t matter, but what does matter is that I absolutely hate my sin am in awe of the grace which enveloped me later as I felt condemned.Driving down the road in my car (without kids), I recounted the days events and fought back tears. I repeated the scenario and my actions in my mind until I realized what I was doing: walking in (self-made) condemnation and completely forgetting (or pushing away) the fact that I was already forgiven for my sin. Not only because I asked forgiveness from my daughter and the Lord, but because Jesus already died on the cross and rose again in order to save me from living in condemnation. And then I stopped fighting and let the tears fall. I don’t deserve this, but it’s true and real.
Yes, there are consequences for my sin. God doesn’t overlook it. But He has sent His Holy Spirit to convict me of my sin and gives me the grace to repent and grow in grace. Instead of sternly looking at me, pointing His finger as if to say, “You really blew it this time…that was the last straw,” he gently, lovingly, graciously works in my heart to help me see my sin and gives opportunity for repentance with joy for the purpose of my sanctification and His glory. That fact alone leaves me tear-stained and amazed.
So as I drove down the road, I preached the gospel to myself. I put on music that would remind me of the fact that no matter what I felt at that moment, the truth is that I am forgiven because of the work of Jesus, not my own.
You are the perfect and righteous God
Whose presence bears no sin
You bid me come to Your holy place
How can I enter in
When Your presence bears no sin?
Through Him, who poured out His life for me
The atoning Lamb of God
Through Him, and His work alone
I boldly come
I come by the blood, I come by the cross
Where Your mercy flows
From hands pierced for me
For I dare not stand on my righteousness
My every hope rests on what Christ has done
And I come by the blood
You are the high and exalted King
The One the angels fear
So far above me in every way
Lord, how can I draw near
To the One the angels fear?
Through Him who laid down His life for me
And ascended to Your side
Through Him, through Jesus alone
I boldly come
© 1994 Sovereign Grace Worship (ASCAP)/Word Music
And she doesn’t remember. When I got out of the car, she ran to me with a smile and a hug.
“Guard my soul and deliver me;
Do not let me be ashamed, for I take refuge in Thee.
Let integrity and uprightness preserve me,
For I wait for Thee.”