“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
- 2 Corinthians 5:17
Before I met Jesus, my life was a mess.
I tried so hard to keep it all together, but I really was without purpose or real direction. I ran hard after success, and relationships, and fun times only to find that when I got them, they couldn’t fill me. I was empty. I was broken. I wanted to be a different person, a new person, a whole person. But there wasn’t anything I could do to fix me.
When I heard about Jesus, he was too good to be true. “Sure, like there's some God out there who could want me or love me? I don’t think so.” I was too messy, too hard, beyond fixing. And, the more I considered Jesus, the farther away he seemed. One night, I remember yelling at God (if he was even there) that I was done with considering the whole Jesus thing because I knew that I would never be good enough to earn his love. And, I know that this is crazy talk, but I can only just tell it like it is. In my spirit, I distinctly felt him say back to me, “You’re right. You could never be good enough to earn my love. That’s why Jesus came. He didn’t come to make you feel guilt, but to pay for it. He didn't come because your life is perfect, but because it isn't. Jesus gave up his perfect life, to give you a new life. And, he did it because he loves you.” It was a love I couldn’t even understand -self-sacrificial, unconditional, beyond all of my wildest ideas. That God could love me? That he would do so much to win me? It was too wonderful, too amazing, and yet true.
I’m convinced that the most miraculous thing in the universe is for a person to really and actually be changed. I know from personal experience. I’m a completely different person now. The old desires, the old priorities, the striving and the emptiness are all gone. Sure, they crop up and tempt me away at times. But, there's a newness. There's a wholeness now that wasn't there before. I’m a walking miracle -a true testament to God's ceaseless pursuit of wanderers and his loving embrace when we turn to him.
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