Even though I invited Jesus to come into my life and be my Lord and Savior at the age of thirteen, I haven't always walked the straight and narrow. I would say that I've committed everything from big sins to little white lies, but in reality all sin is...well sin. God does not differentiate.
What really trips me up, however, is the fact that I have tried to live a good life - to say and do things that would imitate Christ. But, what often happens is that I do the very things that I don't want to do...I act selfishly; I speak harshly; I fail to have compassion...I don't look like Christ at all. "Me too," you say?! You mean I'm not alone?
"For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but am doing the very thing I hate." (Paul speaking in Romans 7:15)
I hope that you have not been like me, though, in getting caught up in faulty theology. My thinking used to go like this: I try to be like Christ. I fail. Therefore, God must be disappointed in me.
False!! Nowhere in the Bible does it say that God is disappointed in us.
I am my own worst critic and so when I would screw up and do the very thing I didn't want to do, the "guilt stick" would come out and I would beat myself over the head with it. In truth, God never beats us up with the "guilt stick" so why do we do that to ourselves?
The enemy...I call him the "sneak"...is very good at whispering lies into our ears, and some of us, are very good at taking the lies and running with them. The enemy seeks to kill and destroy and so he would like nothing better than to render us disabled and ineffective for the Kingdom. What better tool to use than disappointment.
Disappointment says that we didn't live up to someone's expectations.
Just whose expectations are we trying to live up to? God's? The world's? Our own? Food for thought.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
When we invite Christ into our lives, God sees us once and for all through the blood of Christ. He no longer sees our sins, but instead sees us made perfect through Christ's sacrifice on the cross. When Jesus said, "It is finished," the wages for our sin were paid once and for all!
If we truly, truly believe this then there is no room for disappointment. God no longer sees our mistakes and our failures...He sees us only through the cleansing blood of His son Jesus Christ. But, Bev, God's got to know...yes, God knows, but He sees very differently than you and me.
We see mistakes. We hold grudges. We are not quick to forgive. We don't easily forget. God, however, does none of those things.
Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death...(Romans 8:1-2)
The old covenant was built on doing, earning and striving. The new covenant is built on mercy, grace and love. If you are in Christ you live under the new covenant and in the new covenant there is no room for disappointment.
"God is love." (1 John 4:8)
In fact, the entire passage found in 1 John 4:7-21 speaks of God's loving nature. God, who IS love embodies all the fruits of the Spirit. In God is found: love, joy, peace, forbearance (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. (Galatians 5:22-23)
Our God IS lovingkindness! Oh how I love that word! In mercy and grace He gave His one and only son in our place so that we could be declared righteous before Him.
God loves you...He delights in you! Have confidence in the new creation you are in Christ. What a gift - by accepting Christ as your Savior, you can kiss disappointment and its looming shadow goodbye forever! What freedom that brings. Be blessed...
In His love,
ps. As a way of saying "thank you" for encouraging me, I will be entering all the names of subscribers in a drawing for great giveaways from Holley Gerth/DaySpring (www.holleygerth.com) and Starbucks - you KNOW how I love coffee. Subscribe by Nov. 1 in order to be eligible.
I continue to pray both morning and evening for those who read my blog. Feel free to contact me if you have a special prayer request that you would like me to pray about.
If you have never accepted Christ as your Savior...I would be happy to pray with you regarding that too!
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
First, an update on Redeemer Christian School: With PRAISE and special thanks, I would like to extend our sincere gratitude to those of you who contributed to the startup of Redeemer Christian School in Pakistan.
I am excited to report that 20+ children (and the numbers are growing) meet 6 days a week for prayer, worship, Bible teaching and educational instruction. For those that come, this is their only formal education. Thank you for getting them off the streets, out of forced manual labor (and worse) and into the classroom.
Your giving has enabled us to rent two rooms for the children to meet, but so much more is needed! The children are so happy to be there they sit on blankets on the hard floor. We need tables and chairs so that it is easier to write, books, Bibles, writing materials, etc.
Most of the children do not have shoes. For Christmas we would like to give each child the gift of a pair of shoes and a Christmas meal. I don't think that is asking for much. We are working on establishing 501c3 non-profit status - but this too takes money. It will enable us to set up an easier Paypal system. Until that time, we need to do things the "old fashioned way"...
If you would like to see a child get a pair of shoes and a meal for Christmas and if you would like to see Redeemer Christian School continue on the path it has begun through God's Holy power, please consider giving.
Here's How: Send a check made out to: Bev Rihtarchik/RCS
Send the check to: Bev Rihtarchik/Redeemer Christian School
103 Silver Lining Lane
Cary, NC 27513
Please Pray: Please pray for Anosh (our brother-in-Christ) that heads up RCS in Pakistan. Pray for each of the children that they would come to a life-changing relationship with Jesus Christ their Lord and Savior.
Thank you for being willing to bring light into the lives of children who live in a very darkened corner of the world!! Together we can make a difference. Be blessed...
In His love,