“Christianity is the gospel of the failed, of the ungodly, the unable, the unwilling, who simply woke up one day invited to God’s house and went. Period.” John Lynch
A wind has been blowing through my world.
The Spirit, His Spirit, the One wrapped up with mine has been been shaking things up in my heart this week. He has been wooing me back to the heart of the gospel, the heart of what it means to be a Christian.
When He first wooed me I was a little girl. Tucked under covers and teddy bear under my arm, I asked “God” to find my sister. She had been taken by her father, so the story went, and my mom didn’t know where she was.
I prayed that God would bring her back. And He did. My mom found my sister and I believed.
A seed is planted.
When I was in 8th grade I heard a Christian music tape, Clay Crosse, and I was blown away. I had never heard Christian music before, only hymns, and I prayed for what the man was singing about, I wanted it.
The seed sprouts.
I found myself in a church where there was singing and clapping and laughter and my spirit rejoiced. “People clap and sing for God? Why have I never seen this before?” I had found my people; I was where the Spirit was.
The dirt moved; it breaks.
I started going to Young Life in high school because it’s where all the cool kids went on Wednesday nights. I heard about a man-God named Jesus and I fell in love.
Something green lifts towards the sun.
In college I joined the Navigators ministry and decided I would give my life to Jesus; I would follow Him. I knew I was a mess, and I was afraid He wouldn’t love me, but He did. Mess and all. I became His.
God did not draw me to Him through my intellect, He wooed my heart and moved my spirit. When I first met my God, I was vulnerable and passionate; I couldn’t get enough of Him, and I wanted everyone to know Him. But over the years I began to wall up my heart. I started letting voices in that said my mind was more important, and the scriptures must be adhered to as though they consisted of textbook facts. I lost my heart and began letting my mind lead. I grew colder, and I made many judgements on others and myself. I wanted to please God, I wanted to fight for Him and stand for truth. I needed meat; I was a “serious Christian.”
I started trying to live in the ways I thought were godly. I tried and tried but man, I kept messing up. I was such a failure. Before I knew it, I was a shell of the woman I used to be.
No interest in church, no time to study the bible…if I even wanted to, that is.
I felt it.
It is gentle and quiet, and so kind.
He reminds me that He wants me to have a heart of flesh, not of stone. He reminds me that He is pleased with me, just because I’m His. He reminds me that nothing I could do could make Him love me more and nothing I could do could make Him love me less. He reminds me that I am righteous, right now, because of Jesus.
He’s always been there (He doesn’t leave), but I forgot about my heart.
My new heart, the one that is not wicked or ugly. The one that is beautiful because it is infused with His.
Today, I remember my heart, and I let myself be in love.
And friend, it is absolutely, unequivocally,
By Sarah Mae, SarahMae.com
Photo: Used with PermissionLeave a Comment
You spoke right to my heart. Thank you.
Christian News, July 17, 2012 says
[…] Christianity Is The Gospel Of The Ungodly | (in)courage Christianity is the gospel of the failed, of the ungodly, the unable, the unwilling, who simply woke up one day invited to God's house and went. Period.” John Lynch A wind has been blowing through my world. The Spirit, His. https://aws.incourage.me/ — Mon, 16 Jul 2012 23:05:52 -0700 […]
…and you spoke to mine, as well.
and mine too…thank you seems inadequate for sharing your heart with us. This is just what He wanted you to say to me!!! Thank you.
jimmie lee says
Beautiful Sarah, simply beautiful.
Beautiful post, Sarah Mae.
Would you please pray for my family? My husband is facing a serious diagnosis. Our family is relying totally on the Lord for our strength. We know that God is ALWAYS good, and we want His will to be done. All our children are in sweet relationships with their saviour – Thank you, Lord Jesus!! – as are we. The last couple of days, though, we have seen the deceiver at work, trying to undercut our faith and strength. We need prayer to keep our faith strong, keep our eyes focused on Him, and to never waiver. We will praise our Heavenly Father in ALL circumstances.
Beth Williams says
Praying for you and your family. May God guide you and give you His perfect peace, grace & mercy to withstand any diagnosis of man. Know that He is Always with you through every trial!’
I think my heart followed a similar journey. It took the breaking of my heart to finally hear his call. What a beautiful pain it was!
This moved me… and I believe that God spoke to me through this… I could totally relate with your experience and I am still having struggles on being bold about my faith. O yes, I could brag about what I do at church and helping others but I know that deep in my heart, I am longing for something. I want to give my best to serving and loving Him but sometimes, I failed. But indeed, God is our rock, strength and salvation. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. He will be with us through the end of age IF we’ll be obedient. Thank you so much for sharing. This will surely bless more of the ungodly, the unable, the unwilling and struggling people of the King.
Would you believe that God took my family out of state for three weeks, just to teach us this very thing? We got home yesterday.
My husband and I didn’t get grace–we still don’t, but everything on our trip–a trip that didn’t even make sense except that God provided for it–was about the fact that grace is for RIGHT NOW! Not just at salvation, not just when we die… God’s made us good with Him right now!
Still trying to wrap my head around it.
Carmen Lillian says
Thank-you God and Sarah Mae. 🙂
This is so much of my story too! Being wooed and wandering away only to be wooed back again by this awesome amazing loving God, Father, and Friend of ours!
How familiar your journey sounds. I followed the same kind of path.
I love how He wooooos me. I’m so flighty and busy. He knows….and I’m grateful that He loves me anyway!
Wow! That was amazing! Our God is amazing.
I’m sharing this with my pastor…I know this is what he’s been trying to get through to our congregation for awhile now. Thank you for sharing this!
Mitzi M. says
This is the third post I’ve read in 2 days that reminds me that God is pleased with me, just because I’m His. Lord, I’m listening! Thanks, Sarah Mae for allowing Him to use you.
Absolutely beautiful. Thank you for this. I can’t do anything to add to what He has already done for me!
Beautiful! be blessed:)
Thank you for sharing. This hits so close to home for me. What a beautiful reminder of God’s love that never gives up on us. Love the ‘wooing’ analogy!
Lynn Warren says
Thanks for sharing, Sarah Mae. That was such a beautiful visual. It also describes the deserts I find myself in at times, especially amongst my blood family who are not born-again, and I get sucked into their negativity and judgemental attitudes, and forget who I am in Christ; but, as you said, our dear Holy Spirit seeps into those areas and reminds me. I have to laugh at these times, because my attitude becomes so altered that those family members must think I am crazy! But they do know that I am born-again, and so there is the Glory to God; amen. Much “love”, Lynn
sheryl morrison says
Thank you Sarah for reminding us that God never lets go….that he chose us first
Thank you for your words – my wandering heart needed them today.
I’m walking on in daze at the moment, lost in myself and just hiding from others. Yet even when I’m hiding Jesus holds me tight and says I’ve found you.
Amber Kemp says
Beautiful post Sarah. Loved each and every word. <3
Beth Williams says
Vivid lovely post! Thatnks for sharing something so intimate & personal. I have been through similar times as you. I knew I was a Christian in HS, did the church thing but didn’t really live the Christian life at home or in public. Now years later I’m a born-again Christian wooed back by Christ and His love & perfect Peace!
Kerry @ Made For Real says
Thank you for your words today!
Beautiful, Sarah. It’s exactly what I needed to hear. 🙂 God is so good!
This is beautiful Sarah! Thank God for his gentle wooing…
Soooo well said – in a world where “STRIVING” is soo big! Especially in our Christian world, we need to STRIVE to be the best Christian…instead of just BE. BE HIS.
I just have to thank you for posting the John Lynch Truefaced message on your blog. I visited your blog for the first time after reading this post. I have been feeling so defeated, unloved, unable, lately but that message has rejuvenated me and my prayer now is “Lord, I’m going to let you love me….please let your love wash over me!”
When I’m feeling any distance from God, I realize it’s me that moved. He is unchanging. I’m so thankful that He never leaves me nor forsakes me. Thank you for this beautiful post expressing your heart as He wooed you back.
Sarah Peloquin (@SrhPlqn) says
I love being wooed by our heavenly father. When I was in college, I had a similar experience. I felt burnt out, discouraged, weighted down by the expectations of a fundamentalist Christianity that had lost all spark of Christ. Then God wooed me and won me again. I’m going through another period of discouragement right now. Bogged down by what I want in my own selfishness and the every day, mundane acts of life. I want to love my children wholeheartedly and enjoy my husband in all his quirky goodness. This post is definitely a planted seed! Thank you. 🙂
So lovely to find you back writing… Have missed you and your open spirit.
Thankful for your post, for the way that God never leaves us to ourselves and what we deserve.
Amanda HIll (hillpen) says
This was so elegant and beautiful! Reminds me of a post I wrote about God speaking to you in a whisper that Blogher picked up a few months ago. http://hillpen.wordpress.com/2012/03/28/peace-for-the-wandering-soul/
Great voice and timing in your writing. I’ve always thought writing is like music – you have to know when the add the rests, at the right times, and know how long dissonance needs to sting before you submit to the release.
Thank you. I share these experiences and I’m on the same journey back to love.