This is a guest post, written by my wife Lynn Edwards. Even after 28 years of marriage, I am still amazed at the depth of her wisdom and insight. This post by Lynn is quite profound, and I am delighted she agreed to let me share it with you.
I watched a TV show this weekend and one of the characters reminded me of you. Well, the big “universal you”. Me… and you… us. All of us.
For the record, this was not a “Christian” show.
This character was at a drastic turning point in his life. He was a despicable person; had done really bad things. But…
He was ripped apart to the point he could only go one of two ways. His facial expressions indicated he could clamp down and become numb to emotions, or he could become the person he used to be: kind, strong, and happy.
The change happened when the second character started speaking about the good person he is (not “was”) down deep inside. As she spoke life into his being, you could see his eyes darting back and forth. You could just see the brain tipping toward shutting down; then you’d see the switch back to hope.
Back and forth the scene went for almost 6 minutes. It was tense. It was his last chance. No one would ever talk like this to him again. No one would ever see the good in this man. The decision was now. Will he seek redemption? Will he shut down, retreat from the world, accepting who he (and the world) thought he was?Anyone who shows you that much kindness, that much acceptance… you would follow that person the rest of your life.
He reached for the lifeline. He chose life. It was the kindness, the gentleness, and the lack of addressing his crimes, the forgiveness, and the focus on love, which shifted his brain.
We often quote Matthew 6: 31-32: “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.”
Believe me, I have declared these verses out loud many times.
A year ago, I discovered the next verse: But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Seeking the Kingdom of God is looking for the good in everyone; seeing earth from a Heavenly perspective; to be more like Jesus.
But to seek…”and his righteousness”? What is that?
It is to seek his grace all your life. Realize that all your sins are forgiven: past, present and future. Really get that!
Once you see the kindness of God, you will be transformed forever.
Then, seek his grace daily.
Once you see his blessed forgiveness in all areas and times in your life, once you see the kindness of God, you will be transformed forever. You will fall in love with Jesus, who cared enough for YOU, not the generic you, not the universal you, but YOU, reading this right now. He cared enough for…you.
Anyone who shows you that much kindness, that much acceptance… I believe you would follow that person the rest of your life.
Soak in his gift of righteousness. Let his love wash over you.
Know you have a clean slate every day and every hour.
No more guilt or shame. No more. Ever!
Know it came from Jesus. …and all these things shall be added to you!