Release from Self-condemnation

Devotions for those who are weary of feeling not good enough, regardless of the source of those feelings.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017


With two dear sisters in Christ, I've begun another 100 day journey.  We have reached week two, the chapter entitled Abide and Adhere.  As I prayed this morning about abiding in the Lord and finding our needs met in Him, I became aware of His powerful longing for us: a focused, urgent, love-fueled awareness of each one of us as His beloved. He doesn't want to lose us.  Despite all our silly wanderings and the surface fluff of over concern for appearances, He sees our hearts, and His desire is for us.

Our Lord's concern is less about whether we are able to do what He has told us to do than about whether we can be what He has asked us to be.  Like a groom asks for His beloved's hand in marriage, He asks, "Will you be mine?"  And even more heartrendingly He implores us, "Do not forget Me."

Difficult circumstances may find us more faithful to Him than when our paths become easy.
When we find our circumstances pleasant, our bodies comfortable, and all is well with our world, we must not forget Him.  Abiding consists of establishing disciplines of prayer, praise, worship, and intake of Scripture, and holding fast to those disciplines in good times and bad.  But even more than that, abiding refers to the alignment of our hearts.

Let us bind him to our hearts and display His mark of love upon not only through spiritual commitment, but through physical disciplines that enable us to walk more according to the Spirit than to the flesh.  It is difficult.  But even when our outward actions don't show this inward belonging, let us remember His love, and over time as repeatedly bring our wandering hearts back into alignment with Him, our lives will, in increasing measure, reflect His.


My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you...
Psalm 42:6

Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them.
Deuteronomy 4:9

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Trust His Love

The Lord shall prevent the evil thou fearest, and sanctify, remove, or lighten the evil thou feelest.

Matthew Henry*


The idea that God might hurt us in order to help us is flawed logic. 

We risk attributing the devil’s work to the Lord.

Jesus was without sin, 

but He bore the results of our sin. 

The same Holy dynamic is at work in the truth that 

God works all things together for our good**; 

God does not author sin, 

but He takes responsibility for the devastation sin has caused.

 It is our Heavenly Father’s love

Christ’s sacrifice, 

and the resurrection power of the Holy Spirit

 that has won victory over all that is evil.

 The resurrection theme Jesus has woven into each of our lives 

allows us to anticipate His provision and blessing 

both in this world and in the next. 

We serve a God who has promised us good and not harm, 

a future and a hope.*** 

We can rest in the certainty of His love. 

*Matthew Henry’s concise commentary on Psalm 121, public domain
** Romans 8:28 
***Jeremiah 29:11

--from day 63