I'm back to square one yet again. These walls closing in look all too familiar. Shame is clawing to regain its grip on my heart, with the stench of its bitterness breathing down my neck. I must only be digging myself deeper in this rut, as I return to the same footholds that I have frequented countless times. Welcome back.

But this is not a message of despair.

No matter how many times we stumble, despite our most fervent efforts to return, there is one who is greater. There is one who smiles at his beloved, and beckons me to remain in Him. Now remain in my love. If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love. No matter how dark our pit may be, he can shed light. He is the author of light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me," even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. And he has called us to step into that light--we have no reason nor purpose in remaining in the darkness, in the destitution of the bowels of this world. He is calling us to step into his glory and remain in his redeeming love. But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who CALLED YOU OUT OF DARKNESS INTO HIS WONDERFUL LIGHT.

Hurting the heart of our tender and precious Savior is the most excruciating pain we can endure, living as his children. But that pain can be transformed into motivation to not repeat our transgressions. It should NOT be used as a tool for Satan to manipulate our minds into believing we are scum. Why did Christ die but to redeem us from our flesh and clothe us in righteousness? Believing Satan's lies of condemnation and shame completely negates the power of the cross in our own lives-by our own choice. We must fight back, not of our own meager attempt but of the power of the LIVING AND ALMIGHTY GOD. You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

We must counter every one of Satan's attempts to pull us back with the truth of new life that is within us.

He says we are ugly, worthless, and dirty. We proclaim that by the blessed grace of God we are beautiful, precious, and pure.

He adds one more failure to our list. We rest in the glorious fact that God has removed our sins as far as the east is from the west.

He tells us that we are no longer able to take part in furthering the Kingdom of God. We step out in obedience to God's command to share his love and his truth.

Alone, we are broken, helpless, and pitiful. Remaining in his love and clothing ourselves in his glory, we are whole, we are powerful, we have purpose.

You have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Bold



We are each called to a destiny that is far greater than we could ever imagine. That truth is becoming strikingly more evident to me every day.
Lately I have been learning the significance of grace, and how truly essential it is to survival. Grace is more than just a 'Christianese' term sprinkled throughout the Word, and it's more than just a flowery characteristic of our God. It is a crucial part of the very essence of following Christ, as it enables us to love and receive love, and to step into the magnificent destiny our Father has called us to. Without receiving the grace that was offered to us on Calvary, we are shackled by the bondage of shame, which prevents us from being who God intended us to be. When living in shame, we are stuck in a rutof believing that we will never be enough, which results in not loving ourselves and not fully being able to love others because we don't feel worthy. Our minds get stuck in the gutter of guilt, condemnation, and disrespect for ourselves. That definitely doesn't line up with the position of royalty that we claim as sons and daughters of the most high King!
God connected the dots for me recently when he revealed that the "life to the full" that is promised in John 10:10 ("The
thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.") is only truly available to those who have shed their dead skin of guilt and clothed themselves in grace. By the power of his grace, we ARE enough, it is just a matter of believing that and stepping into it.

Thank you to those who have challenged me and encouraged me to step into the woman that God has made me to be, by fully receiving his grace. You are true depictions of the love of God, and have shed light into the darkest areas of my life.