DEVOTIONAL | SHANNON MILLER.
Do you feel pulled in a dozen directions right now? Pressed and molded to fit the expectations of one person after another, until you’re left a bit battered and bewildered? Whether in your family, in the workplace, in education, or in ministry, you may be faced with impossible choices, and a foreboding that you will be harshly judged no matter which path you take.
Close your eyes for a moment, take a slow breath, and picture yourself walking into an open meadow bathed in sunlight. Only one other Person is there, and He has no harsh judgments to speak over you. His presence is the place of peace and freedom you can always return to when you’re feeling frayed at the edges.
Jesus has no unrealistic expectations of your abilities… just wild dreams He plans to fulfill in you, beyond anything you could ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). He greets you not with reluctance or begrudging acceptance, but with outright joy, when you’ve blown it and you turn back to Him (Luke 15:11-24). He does not ask you to earn your way, because in His finished work on the cross, it is paid in full.
“So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death. The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. So God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins. He did this so that the just requirement of the law would be FULLY SATISFIED for us, who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit,” (Romans 8:1-4, NLT, emphasis mine).
Here is grace that shatters our performance-based thinking, as Tullian Tchividian writes in his book One Way Love. “You are not who others see you to be, and you are not who you see yourself to be; you are who God sees you to be – His beloved child, with whom He is well pleased. I’ll say it again, because I need to hear it as much as anyone: the one-way love of God frees us from the oppressive pressure to perform, the slavish demand to ‘become.’ God is not waiting for us to do or not do something in order to unlock His love. The Gospel declares that in Christ, we already are everything we need to be.”
What a wonder, that the only One whose opinion of you truly counts – the One worthy to judge the living and the dead – has chosen to categorically rule that you are righteous, blameless, spotless, pure, by His own blood (Acts 10:42,43; Hebrews 9:11-15)! Breathe this truth in deep and walk in freedom today. You have nothing to prove.