“For thus says the high and exalted One Who lives forever, whose name is Holy, ‘I dwell on a high and holy place, And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit In order to revive the spirit of the lowly And to revive the heart of the contrite.'” Isaiah 57:15, NASB
Clouding my thoughts and distressing my heart, guilt often tags along with me. I usually don’t recognize its presence, yet it’s there–lurking, oppressing, and hindering.
Recently God exposed this awful companion to me. While I’m accustomed to feeling its presence, the Lord doesn’t want me to entertain it any longer. Because guilt holds me back: from joy, freedom, and abundant life in Christ.
“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Rom. 8:1
“These things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy made full in themselves.” John 17:13
“It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.” Gal. 5:1
“The thief comes only to steal, and kill, and destroy; I came that they might have life, and might have it abundantly.” John 10:10
The evil one interferes. He whispers condemnation and judgment while stirring unrest in my spirit. Often his accusation is nebulous, for I can’t put my finger on it. Or, he repeatedly throws a past sin in my face, replaying it in my mind. Either way, the heaviness distracts me and leads me into anxiety.
Christ already has set me free–for eternity and for daily life.
“The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:8
I know and believe this truth, yet now I’m learning to experience it in this area. Praise God! As I talk with Him when these thoughts and feelings arise, He’s helping me discern truth. And the truth is, God doesn’t operate by guilting us.
God dwells with those who are contrite and lowly of spirit … to REVIVE us! His thoughts and ways toward us are always good. Though we experience sadness and regret after we sin, God encourages us. He picks us up when we fall down. He forgives us when we confess.
Friend, does guilt plague you? Please join me in this journey of experiencing freedom in Christ.
God doesn’t guilt His people into living the Christian life–He loves and encourages us, daily making us more like Christ as we yield to Him.