God created crying to help us release our pain

I used to feel wrong when I cried, like I wasn’t being as strong as I should be if I did. In more recent times, I would let my tears fall without sobbing. My face and my clothes would get wet, but I wouldn’t really cry, I would spend the entire time trying to steady myself enough inside so I could stop.

God showed me His mercy recently when He let me know that crying, really crying would help me if I would just do it the whole way. After so many years of half crying, trying to end it as soon as possible, really breaking down and letting it out was foreign to me.

After I cry, I have a headache and red eyes. But I do feel better. A weight does get lifted. Now that I don’t fight crying, I can see the benefit of it.

Crying isn’t weakness. It isn’t masculine or feminine. Simply put, all people, male and female have the God given ability to cry. Crying is a release valve that helps us move through, not around, what hurts us.

 

 

When God forgives you, it is freedom

It can be hard to believe that God loves you unconditionally. All of us have done (or thought about doing) things we are ashamed of. To other people, we present a facade of being a “good” or “nice” person. We want people to like us, and we care about what they think. We know there are limits, even with the people who are closest to us–what they will accept about us, whether they will forgive us when we know we’re wrong and we’re sorry.

We keep secrets. We delete the parts of our histories that we wish weren’t there. Sometimes I cringe when I look back at my younger self. I did some pretty heartless things without realizing how bad they were at the time. From the perspective I have now, I can see the ways I hurt and failed people who loved me.

Those memories feel very raw to me. The regret is painful. There are things I wish I could do over. I am a “nice” person. I am helpful whenever I can be. I like to compliment (sincerely) people and point out their talents and strengths. But I still have wrong thoughts regularly. I am still selfish. I still envy the success of other people.

So it’s absolutely required that Jesus sacrificed Himself for my sins, because I’ve sinned in the past, I still sin now, and I will sin in the future. If going to Heaven after I die depended on me doing a certain amount of right while simultaneously avoiding most wrongs, I wouldn’t make it.

That is why Jesus is key. We cannot make ourselves righteous enough to be worthy of an eternal life with God. We are made worthy by believing that Jesus is the Son of God and that He sacrificed Himself in our place so that all of our sins can be forgiven.

In Psalms 130, verses 3 and 4, it is written: If You, O Lord, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand? But with You there is forgiveness, therefore, You are feared. [NIV Bible]

If there are things you want to change about yourself, surrender control and ask God to help you. If you feel guilty about something, confess it to God. He already knows about it, so it’s no surprise. But He wants you to receive His forgiveness because He knows it helps you to forgive yourself and start again.

I’ve got the victory in Jesus!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzvnqAAt_t0

I want to share this song with you that I discovered from the movie “The Gospel.” Great movie, great soundtrack! Yolanda Adams sings “Victory,” a song that is about how you can get through the pain and trouble in life. And joy is thrown in for good measure, because knowing Jesus is your Savior gives you hope. 

The ultimate victory that God gives us is the victory over death. All we have isn’t just what this life gives us. Jesus is our Savior when we believe He is the Son of God, and that He has the power to forgive our sins, connect us to God the Father, and provide us with eternal life.

What does forever with God look like? It’s a life very different from this one. There is no uncertainty and no fear. There is complete security and endless joy. There is no physical pain or illness. There is no loss of those you love and no mourning or grief.

God promises us that, and He doesn’t go back on His promises. You can count on Him. You know how people will say, “Don’t count on it!” What they mean is, “You might be disappointed, so don’t get your hopes up!”

But God can be trusted with your biggest insecurities and your most important hopes. He won’t fail you! Eternity–forever–with God is assured when you believe in Him. He alone has the power to give you an eternity of love and unending joy! He sees you, He knows you, and He loves you. Let Him give you the victory!!