"...as I go, I comfort myself with the thought that when I come
to the gate of the City, the Ruler of the City will easily
recognize me since I have this coat on my back—
a coat He freely gave me the day He stripped me of my rags"
~ Pilgrim's Progress ~
Sorry I'm so late in posting my follow up to the previous post.
I had a WONDERFUL trip to visit my family.
If you recall...God heavily put it on my heart
to confess my sin to those I've hurt over the years
and ask their forgiveness.
That's a VERY humbling thing but I was eager
and excited to share what God had revealed to me
and to get everything off my chest...it was a burden
I had carried around for far too long.
Also, the freedom I was feeling from all that
God had revealed and worked out in me
the weeks leading up to this moment
was overwhelming...in a good way!
So, I arrived Saturday afternoon and
realized if I had arrived a few minutes later
I would've missed the chance to talk to my Step-Dad
since he was leaving to spend the weekend
with his mom & brothers.
A little history on our relationship....
My SD came into my life 21 years ago
at a very difficult time and
for that I've harbored resentment
and anger in my heart toward him.
Now...never mind that my SD was nothing but
sweet, loving, kind and would do ANYTHING
for me...I couldn't get past my own hurt
to receive that love.
When I sat down to tell him what God
had revealed, confess my sin, apologize and
ask for his forgiveness, I was FLOORED
with his gentle spirit, loving words
and GRACE that was extended to me.
I certainly didn't deserve it but he was very
quick to give it....much like my Heavenly Father!
The next day I was throwing a baby shower
with my mom for my brother's girlfriend.
A little history there, she's been around
the family for over eight years and
through a series of events I lost all
respect for her for some decisions
she made in her life that I disagreed with.
Like any normal person not walking
around in blatant sin...
you would just agree to disagree and move on...
clearly, that was not the case with me!
I was walking around in judgment toward her
and, you know...that makes everything better!
Not so much...I can honestly say I've spent
the last eight years ignoring her...to the point
that I couldn't even LOOK at her.
Imagine family birthdays & holidays with
Well, before the shower started, I was eager
to confess my sin to her and ask her forgiveness.
She was very understanding of why I may have acted
the way I did but I quickly explained there is
no excuse for my behavior.
I was not loving her as Christ would love her.
She, too, quickly and kindly
extended grace to me.
It's humbling to sit here and right this...to confess to
you all just how ugly & deep this sin in my life was
and that I let it go on for YEARS!
But, praise God, my story doesn't end there.
As I drove back to OKC I reflected on what just happened
Both of these people, whom I had NOT loved well
over the years, whom I had not shown the love
and grace of Christ that was so freely given to me,
just POURED out grace to me.
I was humbled by their kindness and even more humbled
by God's kindness. I've done nothing to deserve it...
but grace has been given to me...
it's not the first time & it won't be the last!
Thank you Lord for stripping me of my rags and
placing a coat of grace on my back....
May I be mindful of this and quick to extend grace to others.