I Repent.

January 2, 2014

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Photo credit to Nancy Merkling

As the lights and cameras are weeks from turning on the very humble beginnings of IF and a portion of my soul ships around the world in days, I tucked myself away to pray and find my God who has lately felt distant. I honestly wondered this time- if my dark soul was curable… a little disillusioned from suffering and running hard in the name of things I can’t see.

And in God’s kindness He gently led me to begin this year in the most painful and freeing place that I didn’t expect.

Repent.

I’ve lived driven more than I’ve lived called.

I‘ve wanted to not fail more than I’ve wanted God to save souls.

I’ve wanted a god I could predict and control more than a rush of His uncontrollable Spirit.

I’ve tried to prove myself at the expense of  loving well.

I’ve wanted to be seen more than to see.

I’ve doubted God more than believed Him.

I’ve studied your words online more than God’s words.

I’ve wished for an easier life more than a surrendered life.

I’ve chased wind instead of Jesus and my soul is sick from the very things I preach against.

I repent. And God hovers so close, pouncing on me like the prodigal son with the very best of everything. 

This was my day full of tears and prayer and then at 7:00 my dearest friends are joining me and this will be the mercy of my night.

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And Believe.

We don’t confess so that God will forgive, we confess to remember and enjoy that we are forgiven. Jesus has handled this problem fully and completely and replaced my sin with his goodness. Jesus’ words again and again here were to REPENT and BELIEVE.

Because our enemy is after us.

And he wants us to believe the lie that these dark places define us, that we are frauds for speaking of godliness when we have sin in our souls.

He wants us to doubt our freedom and doubt our God. REPENT and BELIEVE.

 So let’s call his bluff. 

Yep- I sin. But I BELIEVE my Jesus came for sinners, not the righteous. I find myself among the people Jesus came for… not as a fancy teacher in my day or a religious leader who never sees my need for God.

Is your heart hard? Does God feel distant? 

This is the road back. Repent and believe.

And now, lest we get stuck here. That is that. Confess… believe in His grace and let that be it.

On with loving well and freedom and selfless callings that actually fill our souls and joy simply at the nearness to our God.

I want a No-Fear New Year- I stand with my sisters Ann and Lisa-Jo and Beth  as we beat our drum. I think this is a year that chains will collectively fall and God will unleash an army of His people in greater ways for His Name. So let’s deal with this and get on our way… there is work to be done.

We are a generation rising. But we begin on our knees.

Let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith… Hebrews 12:1-2

What are you leaving behind and what are you moving toward in 2014. Go!

 

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26 Responses to “I Repent.”

  1. this is my verse…I’m fixing my eyes. there’s just so so much of what God has whispered to me in the past few years that I see so eloquently written and spoken here. thank you for running so hard. for being real. for calling us onward.

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  2. I personally enjoyed reading this. Many thanks for posting this. I’ll revisit read more and recommend my own coworkers about this

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  3. I just came upon this now, and I just had to say that all the things you repent of sound exactly like what I have been repenting of. It’s all so subtle and internal – it’s the kind of thing that is easy to hide on the outside, but it absolutely eats you alive. Thanks for reminding us that it really is as simple (and hard) as Repent. Believe.

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  4. christine

    I loved this. I can definitely relate, although i feel like i am so concerned with what trying to know what I am supposed to be doing, that i feel like everything in my life suffers. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your struggles…and I just thank you for all you have done! You inspire me to be fully surrendered to God…as I watched you speak at IF Gathering (Re:live), what really stood out to me is when you said you were afraid that we would leave the conference and go do something…rather than invest in our relationship with Jesus(at least that’s what I got from it:)) Thanks again for all you’ve done and all you do…but mostly for showing your true heart for God.

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  5. God gave me the word “release” for 2014. This was/is to be the year of release, and honestly, it has been an incredible ride. With Steven Curtis Chapman’s song “Glorious Unfolding” ringing in my heart since January of this year, now 10 months in God has released me from and to, He has released more of Himself in me, and released more of self from me. Too many stories to tell, yet still believing God that in the time remaining before 2015 there is so much more. He is working on releasing me from fear to risk, and from safe to radical. With each step, I feel this is just the beginning. I don’t know what is ahead, but I know God is in it all.

    Walking with breathless anticipation,
    Joy

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