We are a little over half way through the season of lent. The days have sped by with the busyness of work and kids and traveling and just life in general. I have wanted to make a determined effort this year to slow down and take part in the season of repentance and truly understanding what the cross means. But it has been difficult to not get caught up in the chaos of the every day.
I have had time to reflect this past week though with some down time in the mountains and I can feel God stirring in my heart. I can see clearly how I am more in love with God than ever before, even when I do not always understand His ways or His plans. I can question and be frustrated, but at the end of the day I know that I believe and trust in God's character. I believe that He is a loving God who has good plans for me and my children. I believe that even if the answer is not what I expected or wanted, maybe even a distinct No, that I believe in the God who knows what He is doing and is working on behalf of the children He loves. I feel the Holy Spirit whispering to my heart the assurance of God's great offering of grace and love.
So I continue to take these forty days leading up to Easter to reflect on repentance and my need for grace. The first part is not usually hard for me; it can be easy for me to point out my own short comings, failures and inadequacies. But being stuck on that first part isn't the intent and should not be the whole story. God doesn't want us to stay stuck in recognizing where we fail or are weak, instead He wants that realization to lead us to the part of recognizing the grace that He offers us in love.
When we see our need for Him and release all of our failures and heartaches to Him to restore, then there is freedom. He traveled the road to the cross to give us freedom. Not freedom to do whatever we please, but the kind of freedom that comes in knowing we are not walking this earth alone.
The freedom that promises us glimpses of His glory when we allow Him to shine through our broken parts and weaknesses.
The freedom that promises we have nothing to fear because of His great love for us.
The freedom to hope and to trust in a good future.
The freedom to love without limits.
The freedom to forgive others and ourselves.
The freedom that can only be found in Christ.
"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery." Galatians 5:1
So my prayer for you during this second half of lent is that as you recognize your own need for God's abounding grace, that you will find freedom in knowing that He has already given it to us.