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God is for us! Not against us!

After all, we were created in His image. He created a man, then a woman, and placed them in paradise. He wanted nothing but the best for them.

Then…the original sin…the one that sent the world spinning out into the flesh…she had to eat the apple.

She? Wasn’t it THEY had to eat the apple?

That reminds me of my kids. They love to blame each other.

Why arent the dishes done? She didn’t put them away yet.

Why is there an empty glass left on the table? Because I forgot when he told me to do something.

Did you feed the dog? No, because she was in the way.

In this situation, I hope for an apology and then want to go on my way through the rest of the day. But, that doesn’t usually happen because the one doing the blaming feels justified in their actions.

We are called to follow the ways of God, not the world. This is hard!

It is so easy to justify sin… even more the small sins. Matthew 3:8 says to bear fruit in repentance. God wants us to make a habit of repentance. He knows we are going to mess up. He has watched it time after time.

Something I’ve learned after moving a lot is that people are people. I believe that to be true through time and distance.

In the Old Testament, they sacrificed a perfect living animal.

Instead, just for us, God gave His only Son…to die on the cross…for our sins. I can’t think of a single act that shows His love for us more. He allowed His son to go through tormenting pain and went to Hell to fight the devil for us.

I don’t know about you, but I do everything in my power to keep my son from the cruelty of this world and the hands of the devil.

But God….

He did that for us. He provided a way for our sins to be forgiven. Luke 15:7 Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. Not only does God sacrifice Jesus for the sake of sins, He throws a joyful party with the angels in Heaven!

1 John 1: 9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

God says all we have to do is confess our sins. All we have to do….yet it is so hard. We don’t forgive ourselves. We feel justified in our actions. We didn’t know. What we forget is that God wants to forgive us. We simply need to ask.

2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

I’ve had those really rough days with my kids, especially when they were younger. Then, out of the blue, one of them would come up to me, with a true heart, and say they were sorry. I instantly forgave them…because I knew they meant it. And that is important to God too…mean what you say and turn away from your sin. If you do repeat the sin, instantly say you are sorry.

At first it may be a tiny bit of strength, but as time goes on it will easier if you remember to rely on God’s strength rather than your own. I think my favorite verse of the Bible right now is Matthew 9:13 “Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”

God desires mercy! Think of something you desire. Do you find your desire to be an obligation? No way! He desires for us to ask for forgiveness so that he can have mercy on us. His desire, His passion, His one thing He doesn’t want to exist without is forgiving our sins — the very sins we can not earn forgiveness for….only by the grace of God and His desire to show mercy for us so the angels can shout for joy and we can enjoy paradise in the Holy Kingdom with God.

So, how do we ask for forgiveness?

In the Old Testament they had to do all kinds of things to prep for asking. But through Jesus and the Holy Spirit we can talk to God as we please. We have been given the privilege to ask God, on the spot, for forgiveness.

Sometimes it takes a little prodding from the Holy Spirit to motivate us. But God is a patient God and will wait for you to ask.

The night before Jesus died, He offered wine as His blood and bread as His body for the forgiveness of sin. Communion is a reminder of Jesus dying on the cross. When we take communion, we are to truly examine our sins for the God that battled in an excruciating way so that we may have everlasting life in heaven. John 6:53 “So Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.’”

He is saying, “I really, really, really mean business when I say that unless you repent, you will not have a life with me in heaven.” He must really desire for us to be in heaven because not only will He forgive us but He does not shame us.

Romans 8:1 “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

Celebrate when you are offered the chance for Holy Communion. It is participating in God’s ultimate love so that we may be close with him…not only in Heaven but today and right now.

Kellie Maguire

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Kellie has been married for 16 years to her husband, Kevin. Together they have three children and she has a step-son (who lives with his mom). They have moved around the country many times and are finally growing their roots in their small town.

Kellie’s faith in God is extremely important to her. She has been through many mountains and valleys and the Lord has gotten her through. She loves to ride her bike, write, watch movies, and is very involved in her children’s lives. Being a Mom is her favorite role in life. She values her faith, family, love, and friendships.

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