Hello precious ladies,

First off thank you all for your prayers for James, Isaac and I as we have taken on the journey of seminary and of course the other issues that have arisen back home with Isaac’s dad!

It has been such a blessing to be here in California though I miss each one of you and can’t wait to return!  Our journey to seminary has been an amazing time, you have thoughts of what it will be like here supporting your husband learning deep new theological truths, but one truth I never expected to learn was seeing the depths of what Christ has done for me through the gospel and falling in love with Him all over again.

When you first become a christian there is this time that is called the “honeymoon period” you are so overwhelmed that the Lord would save someone like you and you want to share it with the world.  Then many years pass (or maybe even months) and you wonder what happened to that joy? You look at new believers and smile thinking they are just in their honeymoon period.  I was determined that was not going to be me.  Slowly as I continued in my walk pursuing godliness and holiness I noticed the joy was gone I had left my honeymoon period in the dust.  I was on my knees not praying for a feeling but the true joy of knowing Christ.

Now I have limited space here so I am going to try to cram this in, what the Lord is showing me is that daily I need to pick up my cross.  Ok I get it daily pick up my cross…wrong I didn’t get it.  I was pursuing godliness and holiness in my own strength.  Some how with my prideful self-righteous heart I had made my sanctification a work.  I understood the verse, “if you love Me, you will keep My commandments” John 14:15 I said great I love God now I’m going to go be obedient, instead of allowing my obedience to be an out pour of the love that I have for the Lord, I made my pursuit a work. Joy sucker…yes. Which slowly unfolded a system of standards I had created in my life for myself above and beyond what Christ has prescribed in scripture. Example, I made my devotional time and prayer time something I needed to check off my daily list, “check I’ve done that now I feel good lets move one to the next area on the list”, instead of running to the Lord because I loved Him and wanted to be with Him. I even turn the pureness of repentance into work.  Example, when there was sin in my life I would repent and then beat myself up over that sin, I felt I needed to feel this way in order to find favour with God instead of receiving the free gift of forgiveness. I really hope this is making sence because it sure does in my head 😉

So that all being said even thought I can articulate perfectly the gospel and how we are to act, my heart longed to be obedient, daily my actions said different.  My leader today said something wonderful to me…I don’t use my words as my temperature gage for my walk and relationship with God but my actions and obedience as my gage. My whole point is once I started to pursue “bigger” things in my walk I forgot what Christ had saved me from I wasn’t living daily in light of the gospel I started to tune out speakers who would speak on the truths of the gospel saying “yeay I get that lets move on the “bigger things”. Even though we hear these truths daily they should always pierce our hearts we should never be board of them. But the truth is if we don’t live in light of the gospel asking ourselves in daily situations, what does Our Maker coming to earth as a helpless child, His sinless life, death, burial, Resurrection and Ascension mean and how do I apply it to my everyday walk? This is where our joy comes from, Christ and His work, our “honeymoon” period is found in being daily brought back to the gems of the gospel! I can guarantee being brought back to the cross daily and living in these truths, you will have joy inexpressible.

So now that you have read this whole note your probably wondering why I am writing this, well there is a women’s ministry at our church that I wanted to share with you all.  I understand that you all can’t be in Cali but through the wonderful world of technology they have supplied the audio downloads as well as the lessons online!  The lesson is a 5 day daily devotion that will drive you into the Word and have you digging into the most wonderful truths of our Savior.  I can’t tell you what a blessing this ministry has been to me and I hope and pray you take the time with our Lord to study these precious gems! The study we are doing is on the Character of God and is named “Living in the Reality of God our Savior”  The lessons take about 10-15 mins a day more if you want to dig!  I really hope you will all check it out, our God is so good and I praise Him for what He has shown me through this ministry. There is also a study on Revelation, the I AM’s and Ephesians!

Again I hope this all makes sence to you, please email me if you need me to clarify anything!!!

All for His Glory,

Erin

~how blessed is the man who’s strength is in You Psalm 84:5~

Lesson notes:

http://www.gracechurch.org/ministries/dbpage.asp?ministry_id=68&page_id=162

Audio downloads:

http://www.gracechurch.org/ministries/audiodownloads.asp?ministry_id=68
Book recommondation, Because He loves Me by Elyse Fitzpatrick

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