It's Spring time and I find myself playing outside a lot (hence why I have not been on here a lot lately.) I am LOVING...this weather, gardening, trips to the beach and zoo, walks and runs outside, QT's outside, hot tubs, games, etc.!!! :) In fact, as I type I am beholding birds building nests, butterflies gliding, birds chirping, hummingbirds drinking at my feeder, flowers in beautiful bloom, my wind chimes ringing, my dogs frolicking and chasing squirrels, and the sun gently yet cooly beating down on my skin. Oh praise Jesus! I love Spring and what this season symbolizes as we remember what Christ has done for us! I was actually reminded of it a fresh this morning.
I was reading one of my devotions, which had me in Psalm 42 and 23. It was talking on how when God's "breakers sweep over us and His rod comforts us." I was reminded of how God spoke those verses to me this past summer, when He allowed a certain season to unfold for me and literally changed my life. I saw where I had marked in my bible when He gave me those verses and I was able this morning to write, "It is finished," beside them! Then that got me to thinking of when Christ said, "It is finished" from the cross and just what that meant. That's when I decided to study this matter a bit further. I looked up what the original meaning for the word "comfort" meant, in the context of Psalm 23. It means to change one's heart, mind, actions, disposition. Hello! Oh my!...Through the recent hard season that I walked through, that is exactly what He did. And I am different! I am walking in new life! And that is what God did for Jesus on the cross. Jesus pleaded in the Garden of Gethsemane for "this cup" to be taken from Him, but it wasn't and yet He went to the cross willingly, and then He and we were made new! Same for me. I begged Him to take this past season from me but He didn't so I willingly went through it and therefore was made new! That all got me thinking even further about why, after this past season of pain yet freedom, and the beauty of the spring, why am I still so frustrated in my life right now? I am so grateful for where God has taken me, but there are so many things that I wish were different but aren't, and I am so frustrated! Well, I am studying Romans right now and I came across something interesting that I have never known before.
Paul writes that we are justified by faith. I looked up the original meaning of the word "justified" and found that it means to be declared holy. I always thought that it meant that God made us holy. But it states that He declares us holy, and by faith, we believe it. It made perfect sense once i learned that. For, we generally act out what we believe about ourselves. We are in fact fallen creatures, but God Himself declares/justifies us as holy/righteous. And by faith, we believe that, then we will generally act accordingly. Amazing! Just like God in His perfect timing, this truth has been discovered at just the perfect time for me. I want to do things on my own, but God, just like in the recent season that He brought me through, wants to do things through me, to the Glory of His Name! His "rod" "comforts" (changes) us, His declarations make us Holy! And with that I was reminded of my new garden. I planted it (and re-planted it...see last post) :), I fertilized it, I water it, I put it in the sun, but now there is nothing that I can do but pray that God makes it grow and wait and see what fruit it brings. Same for everything else in my life. You see, the work has been done on the cross, we have already been declared holy...IT IS FINISHED! Now we just bask in what God has made us and keep our roots in Him. Just as this season symbolizes...we have been buried with Christ in His death, and raised to walk in newness of life! It is not anything on our own. The work has been done for us. Let His rod comfort you and then bask in the green pastures that He lays you in! May this weekend be a celebration of what He has done for you! I'm finally just now getting it myself! Oh praise Him!