“Let us strip off and throw aside every encumbrance (unnecessary weight) and that sin which so easily (deftly and cleverly) clings to and entangles us, and let us run with patient and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us.” (Hebrews 12:1 AMP)
Sin tangles us up and keeps us off course from our purpose. It trips us up and we need to be aware of what it really is and how it affects our life and our purpose.
Recently, I got myself all tangled up and without my husband’s help I would have continued to trip over my feet every time I stood up!
I was overdoing it when it came to taking care of my parents. It wasn’t really necessary that I did as much I was. I kept telling myself to slow down and stop running over to see them every other day as they are fine and well taken care of in their present retirement home.
But what was driving me to do this?
The root of the problem was guilt and condemnation. I felt that a good daughter would see them all the time. Waves of condemnation came over me with thoughts I wasn’t doing enough.
I was trapped by this guilt that now ruled my life. But the Bible is very clear that there is no condemnation in Christ. This can’t be the reason we do things.
8 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:1 NASV)
I told my husband that I was acting out of guilt and that I would stop. Except, I didn’t and kept on doing it knowing that I would eventually burn out, which I did.
My feet were entangled and I was trapped in a vicious cycle. Guilt and condemnation would hit me about my parents and I would head out the door to visit them one more time.
Finally, the other morning as I sank into my armchair, my husband turned to me and said, “You have to stop doing this. You say you are going to stop but you don’t and keep doing it over and over.”
This time, on the verge of exhaustion, I heard him.
Yes, it is good to visit my folks, but being driven to do it by guilt wasn’t going to help anyone.
There are two sources of guilt and condemnation. The Apostle John speaks about our hearts condemning us. We have this inner belief we are not good enough and that we need to do more.
“Whenever our hearts in (tormenting) self-accusation make us feel guilty and condemn us. For he is above and greater than our consciences (our hearts), and He knows (perceives and understands) everything (nothing is hidden from Him).” (1 John 3:20 AMP)
Then in a vision, the Prophet Zechariah saw Satan standing at the side of the High Priest Joshua accusing him (Zechariah 3:1). Satan was heaping condemnation on Joshua’s head reminding him of how poor of a job he was doing.
We need to recognize the source of our guilt. Is our heart condemning us with thoughts that we aren’t good enough or are there demonic sources at work?
Often, it is both as Satan likes to take advantage of our inner beliefs and weaknesses.
We need to deal with these false beliefs.
I am grateful for my husband caring enough to be firm with me in a loving way that morning. He extended his hand to help pull me out of my sin cycle because I couldn’t do it on my own.
It was such a beautiful example to me of Christ’s love and saving grace!
We aren’t good enough. We don’t measure up to God’s standards but Christ loved us enough that while we were yet in our sin He died on the cross and shed His blood to cover our sin and make us good enough in God’s eyes.
For this I am eternally grateful!