Living by the Rules

I went to bed with a heavy heart. I knew I had to once again say that prayer of forgiveness. You see, I had messed up again. I was unkind, impatient, swore, even said nothing when I was given too much change back at the store. I once again had that inter-yuck feeling from not performing as I had promised God I would in my prayer the night before. So here I go again, asking for forgiveness and promising to somehow do a better job with that daunting list of “rules” for may Christian life.

Do you feel as though you are on a Ferris wheel of messing up, asking for forgiveness, promising to do better, only to find yourself back at the same place 24-hours later. Sometimes I just give up. This is impossible so why try. Life as a Christian is supposed to be joyful, so why do I constantly feel this inner-sickness gnawing at heart.

In the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5) Jesus teaches that He assumes our sins and God imputes our sins on Jesus. So what does this mean? Jesus takes responsibility of all the bad things we do and so our sins are not seen as something to be judged. This frees us up to focus on loving. Loving our God and others.

So you might say, if my sins are imputed (points for using the new vocabulary word) on Jesus, then we can do whatever we want with no worries, right? Not so! Jesus takes the responsibility for our sins so we can focus on loving, loving Him and loving others. Remember what it was like to be a child. We wanted our parents’ approval so bad; we wanted to catch them bragging about us to other adults. Was this accomplished by acting like we were asleep when mom came to check on us at bedtime only to get up after she left the room? Did we sneak an extra cookie after we were told we could only have one? As we got older, did we lie to our parents about going to a church event when we were really attending the concert they did not approve of? No, most of the time we did what they asked because we wanted the relationship to grow.

So if we are a Christian, we should be striving to let Jesus know how much we love Him by doing things we know please him, not because we have to, but because we want the relationship to grow.

By Becky Watkins

15 thoughts on “Living by the Rules

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