When I’ve cleaned myself up a bit; cut out that thing; got a handle on my sin - then I’ll do it. Then I’ll really open up and meet with Him. Or if not tomorrow, definitely Sunday.’
I often find myself thinking this way. Or rather, I find myself living in a way that reveals this subconscious reasoning. I go through the motions of faith, knowing in my head that Jesus dealt with my sin at the cross, but without experiencing true intimacy with God - because I don’t surrender my heart.
I keep it to myself, scrubbing away at it, desperately trying to make it more presentable. Waiting for it to heal independently of Him so that He doesn’t have to encounter its sickness. Inching closer to that perfect moment when I’ll have finally ironed the last crease out of my life so that I can open the gates and let Him in.
The Accuser wants to keep us forever looking to tomorrow, living in that place of lonely isolation, scrubbing away at our hearts. He’ll tell you that this time you’ve really gone and done it. That you should probably just let God cool off for a while before you try and talk to Him again. Clean yourself up, cut it out for a few days, get a handle on it. Then you can approach Him. He’ll paint a picture of God brimming with fury, shaking His head in disappointment and turning His back in exasperation. So, we keep on scrubbing, trying to clean up the mess before we consider letting God in.
But God doesn’t want me when I’m good enough. He doesn’t just want me tomorrow. He wants me now. In my sickness and mess and sin - now.
The Accuser will huff and puff; he will attack your confidence, steal your joy, and threaten to take your calling. He will point to your failures and try to drown you in your sin. He will work to waste your life away with anxiety by telling you it’s already over, that it’s only a matter of time until the lightning strikes, that if you’re in for a penny, you may as well be in for a pound. He will keep steering your thoughts back to what you’ve done and offer some vague point in the future when it’ll be ok for you to approach God again. Forever suggesting, “Tomorrow?”.
He is a liar. Today is the day for you to be right with God.
When confronted with the Enemy’s lies, fight back with the Bible’s truth.
God doesn’t change His mind. He isn’t uncertain. He doesn’t wonder whether you’re still worth it. He loves you. Your identity is secure. Your sin is forgiven. Jesus paid it all.
You don’t need to hold onto it and punish yourself with it: you must give it to Jesus, only He can pay its debt. Confess it to Him and know that He has covered the cost of it with His life.
Accept that it has been paid.
Justice has been done, you are free, move on with your life. Respond by glorifying Him with your delight in Him.
You aren’t worthless.
You aren’t dirt.
You aren’t unloved.
You stand in the victory of Christ.
Know what is already true.
When we know we are light, we walk by the Spirit as children of light. When we know we are loved, we joyfully reflect Jesus’ heart of love. When we know ourselves as cherished children of God, we live in a way that desires to please our Father. We don’t need to take the robe off our backs, the rings from our fingers, the sandals from our feet, and return to live in the pigsty.
Our Father has brought us into the family, into an eternal celebration, into a new identity, from which we fight and defeat sin in the power of His Spirit.
You don’t need to wait any longer.
Come, now. Meet with Him, now. Give Him your heart, as it is, now.
There is grace enough for all of it. He loves you and runs to meet you where you are, in your sin and mess and shame. Your deficiencies have been dealt with, definitively, at the cross.
God drove a nail through your rebellion so that you can now rest in the sufficiency of His grace.
Sit and delight in Him. Ignore the lies.
See His true face. His kind eagerness. His love.
Meet with Him, and know that you are right with Him, now.