When Imperfection Keeps Us from Jesus

When Imperfection Keeps Us from Jesus

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
Avatar
Latest posts by Kristi F (see all)

Have you ever let your imperfection keep you from Jesus? I have.

And I’m here to say, no matter how imperfect you are, don’t believe the lie that Jesus needs you to be perfect for you to draw near to him! Never!

He came specifically because HE KNOWS we are not perfect. We can never be perfect without him.  And it is only through him that we can be perfected.

But what about the imperfection that keeps us away? This is my testimony of how long I believed that lie and how Christ finally freed me from it. Praise the Lord for his freedom!

I was sitting against the wall at basketball practice…

…with a few other teammates waiting for our turn for drills. Out of the blue, my friend turned to me and asked,

“If you died today where would you go, heaven or hell?”

Without hesitation, I said, “I would go to hell.”

 

Once asked, that was not a question I could shake off.

It literally haunted me for days, then months. I grew up in a Christian family and I understood that making a commitment to follow Jesus was a big deal and something I should do. But I just couldn’t do it. I might have only been in eighth grade, and I was a “good” person on the outside but on the inside I knew who I really was. I didn’t understand my value to Christ and Satan was using that for all it was worth.

i-didnt-understand-my-value-to-christ-and-satan-was-using-that-for-all-it-was-worth

Not long after that conversation, my grandfather, whom I adored, sat me down at his kitchen table to talk. We always talked, so that wasn’t anything new, but this time it was specifically about my salvation. Love exuded from him. Even though I don’t remember what I said, I do remember how I felt and what I believed. He explained many things, but I couldn’t shake the lie that I had to be better before I could be saved.

In my mind, until I got that one big sin under control, I wasn’t worthy of Christ.

In my desire to be clean for Jesus, I didn’t realize that He is the only one who can cleanse my heart. I remember the internal struggle. I sit here crying as I remember screwing up once again and thinking, “I’m never going to be worthy. This is never going to leave my life. Why me? Why am I stuck with this? Why can’t I get over it?”

My grandfather never got to see me give my life to Christ. Only a few months later, he passed away. His death made his point all the more real…one day we will leave this earth and we will spend eternity somewhere.

After my grandfather passed away, I was devastated. I remember waking up at a slumber party at 4:11 a.m. not knowing why, only to find out the next day that was the exact time he passed away. Although I didn’t see it then, God was working. He was using different people in my life to bring me to Him.

BUT I still couldn’t fathom why he would want me the way that I was. I believed I had to be better for a Savior who was perfect before I could follow him.

The Truth sets us FREE

Thankfully, others did not give up on telling me the truth even though I’d heard it before.  Some needed to plant, some needed to water, right? Well, that principle was definitely happening in my life in regards to rinsing this lie off my heart. I’ll never forget the day my Bible class teacher asked if he could study the Bible with me the following Saturday. I knew what he wanted to talk about and I agreed. That day, one by one, he walked me through Bible verses that showed the truth. Finally, I started to see the truth and see Satan’s lie for what it was…a lie!

From that moment on, I got so excited! I realized there was nothing I could do to make myself clean.  Truly, Jesus is the only One who can wash all our sins away. And better yet, He wants to wash us clean no matter how dirty we are! By following him, we no longer have to be slaves to sin!

This misunderstanding

is one of the reasons why when we read our Bible together as a family, we make it a point to show how God uses imperfect people. Only One who walked this earth was perfect. He died so that all of us imperfects would know true relief from our sins, our shame, and the chains Satan binds us with emotionally, physically, and spiritually.

See, Satan wants us to believe this lie. His goal is to keep us as far away from Christ and his redeeming love as possible. When we start to believe that Christ will meet us right where we are, Satan begins to lose his hold over us. He will try everything to tighten his “death grip” so that we will continue to doubt instead of running to Jesus and trusting him with our lives.

We do not need to be perfect to come to Christ. We do have to be willing to surrender ourselves and follow Christ.

Proof You Do NOT Need to Be Perfect to Come to Christ!

If you struggle with the idea that you have to be perfect to come to Jesus, read over these passages. Let that lie crumble! These verses (and many others) showed me I couldn’t get rid of my imperfections by myself.  Only by putting my faith in Jesus as my Lord and Savior to take away all my sins, did I understand I could come to him in my imperfect state.

As always, it is good to dig into the context of these verses so you get the full picture.  

while-we-were-still-sinners

John 3:16-18 – We have to trust that Jesus died for our sins…all of them!

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

Hebrews 10:14 – Jesus’ sacrifice

For by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

Romans 3:21-24 – All have sinned, everyone is imperfect

There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

Did you catch that?  “ALL have sinned” and “ALL are justified” by Christ’s grace! That means no one is perfect before they come to Christ, only after.

(Romans, by the way, is an amazing book on how Christ’s blood covers us.  A total must read!)

Ephesians 2:8-10 – Salvation is God’s gift to us

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

 Romans 5:6-8 – Christ died for us sinners aka the imperfects!

You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Acts 2:38 – We can repent of all the sinful things we’ve done

Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”

Romans 6:3-7 – No longer slaves to sin and will be resurrected with Christ!

Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?  We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—  because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.

(The entire of Romans 6 is great for clearing up this lie!)

Hebrews 12:1-3 – Christ is the perfecter of our faith, not us

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Let God’s truths set you free!

Our Prayer

Lord, we praise you with all that we are! While we were still stuck in our sins, you sent Christ to die for us. To save us! You count us worthy and love us, even when we are ashamed of everything we’ve done. You hold your arms open to us and tell us to run straight into them. You’ve missed us and want an everlasting relationship with us. Help the lies that Satan uses to hold us from you to fall from our eyes. Help us believe your truth instead. Let us be in your word so we can fight the lies of Satan away from our hearts. Let him never enslave us again. In your One and Only Son who brought us true freedom – Amen!

Be encouraged by these testimonies too!

Surrender to Christ Daily Walk with Christ Rekindle the faith My Faith Journey

Your New Name: Finding Identity in Christ

Your New Name: Finding Identity in Christ

I’m Lana, a native Oklahoman. Married 17 years to the first boy I ever dated. Mama to two amazing, darling girls. I’m a coffee-drinking, book-reading, home-educating night owl! An accountant in my life B.C. (Before Children), my dream job would be getting paid to read all day.And if you’re into Meyers-Briggs personality tests, I’m an ISTJ. Most important of all, I’m a follower of Christ.
Lana W

What’s Your Name?

What are your children’s names?  Do you have a story or reason behind the name you chose?  Recently, a friend and I were talking about how the names we eventually gave our children were so much different than we originally planned.

I started thinking about all the names we receive when we become followers of Christ.  Isaiah 62:2 says, “You will be called by a new name that the mouth of the Lord will bestow.”  So after studying the Scriptures, I found these names given to us by the Father:

 

Members of God’s household (Ephesians 2:19)

Have you ever been a guest in someone else’s home? Even though we are welcomed into the person’s home, we often feel as though we must be on our best behavior during our stay. Sometimes we might even feel like an outsider, not knowing the host’s normal routine and expectations.  The good news is, God wants us to be permanent residents in his home…not just a temporary visitor.  When we are members of God’s household, we can be at ease, knowing that we are His no matter what!

Chosen to be Adopted (Ephesians 1:4-6)

Before God ever created the world, He formed a plan to adopt us into his kingdom.  It brings him great pleasure to make us part of his heavenly family!  Just like adopted children take the name of their new family, we receive the name of Christ that we can wear proudly.  This name signifies to others that we belong to him!

 

Children of God (John 1:12)

When we believe in Jesus and receive him into our lives, we are born of God and are given the right to be called his children.  What comfort we can take, knowing that we have a good and generous Father!  And more than that, we immediately gain a whole host of brothers and sisters in Christ.  I find such comfort in knowing that I have an extended family around the world.  It’s not the blood running in our veins which makes us family, it’s the blood of Christ joining us together eternally.

 

Heir to the kingdom and co-heirs with Christ (Romans 8:17)

Because we are member’s of God’s household and his children, we are also his heirs.  As Galatians 3:29 says, “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”  Remember, the promise to Abraham was that all nations on earth would be blessed through his offspring.  Since we belong to Christ, we are part of Abraham’s seed, though most of us are not Jews.  One thing that resonates with me is that an heir has a duty to properly handle the inheritance.  As heirs of the kingdom, we will “bless all nations” by telling them the good news of Jesus!

Citizen of heaven (Philippians 3:20)

I find it especially comforting to know that my citizenship is not of this world.  At a time when the whole world seems to be in political turmoil, I know that Jesus is my King.  He is sitting on his throne at this very moment, and no matter what happens on this earth, He is in control!

new name

 

Which name that you’ve received from God speaks most to your heart?

 

your-new-name-pinterest

Putting God First, Means Putting God First

Putting God First, Means Putting God First

Follow Me
Melissa is an Okie with a Texas heart. She is a wife and a mother of four. After having taught in the classroom for 8 years, she now happily finds herself as a stay-at-home mom. In any spare time, she enjoys leisure reading and also enjoys writing on her blog (chroniclesofakeeper.com). Out of all the little adventures of life - her greatest joy is found in her relationship with God. Walking in His grace, living in His peace and resting in His redemption is something she is very passionate about sharing with others.
Melissa W
Follow Me

A hint of daylight is breaking through the window in my bedroom. The rooster is crowing.
The slightest rustles are being heard throughout the house as my kids begin to wake and
find their way into my bedroom. I stretch; I yawn. I reach over to my nightstand and grab
my phone.

I have heard it said that it takes 21 days to form a habit (although, I’m pretty sure research has proven that to be misleading). No matter, somewhere in the last few years I have formed quite the habit. I don’t know when I really started doing it or how long it took to become a habit. The moment my eyelids start to flutter and can barely hold themselves open…I reach for my phone and begin.

I scroll through – any missed text messages, new emails, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, my local news apps, and, of course, the weather app(s) on my phone. After I have had my “fix” – I dress for the day, I make my bed, get breakfast going, feed my kids and then, finally, take time to read my Bible and spend a little time with my Heavenly Father. Of course, as a mother of three little ones, this time is often interrupted.

So, later in the day, while the kids are napping (or having quiet reading time) and the house is silent, I try and delve further into God’s Word and have some serious one-on-one time with Him. This was my routine.

Then the Spirit moved.

I was convicted about my morning routine recently, during a ladies’ Bible study.  It was time to change. I became aware of the need to have my quiet time with Him in those first few moments of my day, while all was still. My children all wake up at different times, especially now in the summer months. My earliest riser is usually up by 7:30. So, I began to make sure I was out of bed, dressed, and in the Word between 6:30 and 6:45. I needed that time with just me and my Lord, no interruptions, before I began my day.

Yes – I will be honest – initially, it was very hard. I am NOT a morning person and giving up a perfectly good hour of sleep seemed…incredulous. However, the reward was more than I could hope for. He was my strength and joy when I truly did not have it.

Still, the Spirit moved.

One day, while listening to a favorite song of mine, my soul was yet again challenged. Again, He was further drawing me to a place of closeness with Him. I prayed and I sought Him. I began to evaluate my life to see if there was anything that I was placing in front of Him. I caught a small glimpse – a glimpse the size of an iPhone 6. It was in that moment when I understood that putting God first, meant putting God first. Up to that point, I had changed everything about my mornings except for my little phone routine.

I began to evaluate my life to see if there was anything that I was placing in front of Him. I caught a small glimpse – a glimpse the size of an iPhone 6.

I wake up every morning and still reach over to my nightstand, except now I keep my Bible
there so that it will be the first thing I reach for. I still want to mindlessly peruse through my phone first thing every morning, but I want to seek Him more. I wake up each morning at the hour I need to so I can have time with Him. I still crave more sleep, but I crave to know Him more. Every day, with His help, it gets easier. Every day, He proves to me that He is worth it. Every day, I want more and more to put Him first.

“My soul yearns for you in the night;

in the morning my spirit longs for you…”

Isaiah 26:9 (NIV)

“My soul yearns for you in the night;in the morning my spirit longs for you…”

I began to evaluate my life to see if there was anything that I was placing in front of Him. I caught a small glimpse – a glimpse the size of an iPhone 6. pinterest
Putting God First pinterst

 

I Can Throw My Hands Up Worries Down

I Can Throw My Hands Up Worries Down

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
Avatar
Latest posts by Kristi F (see all)

“I’m Gonna throw my hands up worries down!” When I heard this line in The Love and Outcome’s song “The God I Know,” it struck a chord in my soul that has been echoing in my heart for days now.

This struck me hard for many reasons both past and present.

The chords of my past – “It’s more than a rescue…”

When I was baptized at the age of 14, I thought that Christ had completely freed me from my sin and forgiven me for everything, BUT I didn’t completely understand it.  So for years following, I lived in slavery to doing things right.  I lived in a works based system. From minute to minute, I was saved and then not because I messed up. (At least that’s how I thought about it.)  I would pray that I would be forgiven, get it right and live a perfect life.  It wasn’t until years later that I finally understood an amazing truth that scripture reveals but I didn’t understand:

Grace.  

Yes, by grace we are saved.  That I knew.  I understood it was Christ’s amazing love for us that brought Him from heaven to the cross, but I didn’t understand that grace carries me throughout life.  Grace does not stand there in condemnation from minute to minute.  Grace says you are not perfect and I forgive you anyway.  You never will be perfect.  Instead, God’s grace gives us the One as our counselor who is THE PERFECTER of our FAITH.

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.
-Paul, Ephesians 2:8-9

So now, I throw my hands up worries down…

I Can Throw My Hands Up
Worries Down
I Remember When He Showed Me How

To Break Up With My Doubt
Once I was lost but now I’m found
No Strings Attached When He Saved My Soul
I Want You To Know The God I Know
Oh, You Gotta Know
Oh, The God I Know
-from The Love & the Outcome’s song The God I Know

In every moment, I’m free and alive.  I don’t have to worry about my salvation because it is found in my faith in Christ Jesus!  He is the living Son of God, who died on the cross and rose from the dead taking Satan’s hold of death from us who believe.  We are free!  All of us who have given our life to Christ.  So, if you have found yourself living in the bonds of slavery to works in order to find salvation, study this deeper so you can allow Jesus to set you free in Him!

Yes, our faith will lead us to wonderful deeds that glorify Christ, but we have to understand it is not our deeds that save us.  It is the gift of grace through our faith in Christ Jesus that saves.

In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
James 2:17

Our Prayer

Lord, we can’t even begin to thank you for your immense love for us.  For freely gifting us your grace, mercy and eternal forgiveness.  You have found the only way to reconcile us to you and you did it because you loved us so much.  Let our love for you be evident through our actions.  Help us to grow stronger spiritually, mentally, physically and emotionally day by day so that we can combat the lies that Satan uses to keep us enslaved.  Only you have true freedom and your freedom is a gift that we cannot earn.  Thank you for this magnificent gift and help us to see it for what it truly is.  Let us appreciate it, praise you for it, and share the grace that you have so freely given us.  In the One who gifts grace to all who believe in Him – Amen!

If you haven’t listened to this song, The God I Know, now is the perfect chance.  How does it speak to your heart?  Don’t you just want to throw your hands up and your worries down and trust God with your entire being?

 

I Can Throw My Hands Up, Worries Down pinterest
What Makes You Beautiful – Piano Guys {Music Monday}

What Makes You Beautiful – Piano Guys {Music Monday}

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
Avatar
Latest posts by Kristi F (see all)
The Piano Guys take a piano and use it in a completely different fashion than most of us would expect a piano to be used.
Sometimes we need to take off our earthly filters and see that God can do so much more with what he has provided than what we can even imagine!

“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”
Ephesians 3:20-21

Pin It on Pinterest