It’s been a bit since my last post. A lot of that has to do with the fact that I’ve been extremely busy. I’m back in Boone preparing for a job that has changed my life. For the second year in a row, I’ve been selected to be a Student Orientation Undergraduate Leader (SOUL) at my school. It’s a job with great friends and great experiences. However, this past week compared to the previous week at SuCo is very different. SuCo was all about relaxation and rest, this week has been all about go, go, go…do, do, do.
Needless to say, I’m struggling to find the balance between the two. Remember how I said in my previous post that there was a bit of a “Jesus-camp-high” element to what I was writing? Well, right now I’m in the part of the descent process that teaches you how to take what you’ve learned and live it practically. And that requires me doing something. Yes, rest is a beautiful, wonderful, and very important thing, but becoming sanctified (more like Jesus) isn’t something that is one sided. I have to work while Jesus works through me.
I ended my last post with:
My justification (being made right through Christ) required nothing of me, but my sanctification (becoming more like Jesus), does require something of me.”
Repentance. It’s a word that usually gets associated with something along the lines of a huge drawn out apology, maybe blanketed with deep reflective tears, and ending with a bold and brash “cleansing.” This is done by vehemently ripping things off walls and throwing away all the “bad” things in your life.
A bit much? Yeah. I mean, sometimes repentance may mean that you have to make some drastic changes, but the act of repentance itself is not big and showy—neither is becoming more like Jesus for that matter. Neither repentance, nor sanctification is a Broadway production. When I repent, I am not the star. As I become sanctified, I am not the star. BUT, I am apart of the process.
“God doesn’t command us to be justified because that’s a complete work of God, but He does command us to be sanctified because that’s a work of God and the believer.” The confusion is trying to earn our righteousness through holy living. Sanctification involves a continual engagement with God because of and in what He has done in order to become more like Him.
Okay, Jayna. What’s your point here? You’re rambling a bit.
Good question. My point is this: It’s a process. Life. It’s a process. And as a Christian, a big part of my life is seeking after the Lord and then repenting of the times when I fall short. But sometimes it’s hard to wrap my mind around that because of the fact that I know I’m going to fail. No, I’m not trying to be pessimistic or shame myself, I’m being honest.
I am going to mess up. I am going to make mistakes. I am going to say and do the wrong things.
And it is when I mess up that I need to run to the cross. Because that is where I am whole, that is where I am justified, that is where I am sanctified, that is where I am me. And it is the deep love of my Savior that draws me there. Jesus is what defines me and because of that, my mess ups become His and I become His perfection. It’s beautifully mind blowing because I don’t deserve it.
I can’t earn it. And that’s what I have to continually remind myself, especially as a SOUL. This is my second year in the position and so there is a part of me that screams, “I’ve got this. Jayna, You’ve been blessed with the ability to do this job well, so do it.” However, there is that part of me that screams, “You really don’t know what you’re doing, but act like you do so that everyone thinks you’ve got it all together.” And guess which part of me I listen to more?
It’s hard, y’all. I am so deeply concerned with how others view me that it projects into all areas of my life. But who am I trying to convince that I know all the things? Who am I trying to impress? Who am I trying to live for? The answer should be Jesus Christ. And if that’s my answer, then I should take a step back and breathe because I already have every ounce of approval that I could ever want and need. I have already been justified through His death on the cross. I have it all and because Jesus is more than enough, His grace, love, mercy and righteousness are also more than enough– never ending.
So, I’m learning. I’m learning that I need to be confident in the gifts and abilities and talents the Lord has given me. I’m learning that I need to work hard, but not try to live so perfectly as a means to maintain or earn my righteousness. I’m learning that I don’t need to “mess up” intentionally just to do it, or to prove to other people that I’m not perfect and that I’m human. I’m learning that in the presence of Jesus there is fullness of joy and that shame is expelled at the foot of the cross. I’m learning that just because I blog about how I’m feeling that doesn’t mean that I suddenly become a better person. I’m learning that I do have a responsibility to live out the truth that I know. I’m learning that when I do mess up, my justification isn’t lost. I’m learning that all that I am learning I will continue to learn. It’s a process. And one day, this process will be complete.
So, here’s to what lies a head…
[Jesus, thank You for your forgiveness and for Your love. Remind me continually of this process of sanctification and Your grace to help me through.]