We have been blessed to share our testimony on several occasions these past few weeks. As I sit here today, praying and pondering all that has transpired in my life, I don’t find it hard to recognize the old me. How could I forget?
As I was working this morning I was listening to some music and Amazing Grace came on. Boy does that song hit me deep in the heart. A lot of the times it brings tears to my eyes as I think of just how amazing HIS grace truly is. I was not the worst person to ever walk this earth, but I wasn’t anywhere near the best either.
For complete transparency I still struggle at times for the things I have done, for the person I had become. The enemy has a tendency to bring things back to memory hurts my heart. Some nights it even keeps me from sleeping as I battle with thoughts of my past and the redemption found in Jesus.
On a number of occasions I’ve had people tell me that they just couldn’t see that being my past. They couldn’t see me being the angry, violent, drug addict, alcoholic, womanizer that I used to be. It is a true testament to the changing power found in Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:17 states “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
God’s grace is truly amazing and life changing if we allow it to be. There is a part of the song, as most of us know, that states “my chains are gone, I am set free”. When I hear those words my heart fills with so much joy and thankfulness. To know with everything I am that I am free from the past life. That I am no longer bound nor defined by the person I once was.
God’s grace is not a free pass to sin. God did not save me from those things for me to return to them. Jesus didn’t die for me to remain or return to my sin. His Blood washed me clean so I would never return to my old self. It would be foolish for me to think otherwise. It would make about as much sense as being rescued by the Coast Guard in the middle of the ocean, only to jump out of the helicopter back into the water.
Will I still sin? Sure I will. As long as I am in this body and in this fallen world there is a huge possibility that I will. If that were not the case then 1 John 1:8-9 would be a waste of ink. There will be struggles and some battles we will lose, but we must press on. We must continue to pursue Jesus and do our best daily to follow His will and His Word. Salvation is not a free pass.