Consider the Lilies..: It's just so.. Woah..   

May 29, 2013

It's just so.. Woah..

Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.
Isaiah 1:18

Last Friday I received a phone call from the senior pastor of our church..  He was writing the sermon for Sunday and had a couple of questions for me..

The conversation went like this:

Pastor- "When you were a satanist what did you think about the laying on of hands?"

Me- "That we could do whatever we wanted for them; heal, bring money, a better job, love, whatever."

Pastor- "Is that all you did?"

Me- "No..  As far as the people we were touching knew, we were doing wonderful things for them..  And we did do what we said we would do..  We did whatever they wanted, and it worked..  They got money, love, whatever..  But that was just a smokescreen for the terrible things we were really doing to them"

Pastor- "Where did that power come from?  Did you believe it was from a god, like Odin or something?"

Me- "The power came from demons.  We told people it came from the gods..  Usually Diana or Isis..  They were non-threatening and put people at ease."

Pastor- "So it was after you were saved that you realized the power really came from demons?"

Me- "No, we always knew."

        He asked me if he could share our conversation in his sermon, I said "sure' and didn't think much more of it until the following Sunday when he relayed our conversation to the rest of the congregation..  
Seriously, it's so different hearing it than it is telling it..  I was sitting in the front row (my husband does security so we have to sit there) so I couldn't see anyone behind me, but I could hear them..

        When the pastor said the word "demons" I heard the people behind me..  "Oh gosh!  Oh no! Oh Jesus!"  It felt strange hearing the surprise in their voices..  What was so completely normal to me for so many years of my life was shocking to the people sitting near me..  I mean, I know that my background is different from the others at my church, but I never really paid attention to how it affected others when they heard about it..
        But then, when the pastor repeated the last part of our conversation; "No, we always knew."  I heard more than just surprise in the voices behind me, I heard condescension..  I heard "tsk tsk" and "that's sick"..  Things like that..  I wasn't offended, it's a natural response..  

        But at that moment I was struck with a revelation that brought me to tears..  I became very aware of the overwhelming power of God's forgiveness..  
We all know that when we receive Christ as our Savior, that our sins are forgiven..  We say it all the time.. We sing about God's forgiveness, tell other's about it, write about, pray about it, blah blah blah..  But it wasn't until that moment that it really hit home for me..

God forgave me..  Me..  A former satanist..  Someone who at one time put hands on people and cursed them..  
He.  Forgave. Me.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
2 Corinthians 5:17

He could have said "Ren, I forgive you, but I am going to remove your hands and your tongue so you never hurt another person again." and He would have been completely justified in doing so..  I deserved so much worse than that..
You know, when someone betrays our trust it can take years for us to trust that person again, if ever..  When someone hurts us, we can say we forgive them, but we never really forget it..  
But God forgave me in an instant..  Not only has He forgiven me but He actually allows me to put my hands on people and pray over them!
It absolutely blows my mind..  Seriously, it's just so..  Wow..  There isn't a word big enough to express how incredible it really is!

I can honestly say that now I understand forgiveness..  I thought I did before, but I really had no idea..  Everything, every offense against me, every argument I have ever had, every person I have ever felt angry at; it all just seems so insignificant now..  How can I be angry?  How can I hold a grudge at all?  
You know that saying: you can forgive but you can never forget?  Well pardon the expression, but screw that!  You can forget as well as forgive..  
It's just not that important..  It isn't!  The one or two things that someone has done to offend you is nothing compared to the lifetime of offenses that God has forgiven and continues to forgive you for..

For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Matthew 6:14-15

Life is short..  Forgive and forget..
Once you realize the significance of His forgiveness, how can you do anything else?



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25 comments:

  1. Ren, I'm just getting to know you through your blog, but I love your honesty and vulnerability. You are totally spot on! When we think of the magnitude of what God has done for us, everything else pales in comparison. Thanks for sharing. :)

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    1. I really appreciate that Jen :)
      And thanks for commenting, I couldn't remember how to get to your blog!

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  2. Ren...thank you for being raw and honest but mostly for telling it how it is: The Lord forgives. He has compassion on His sheep and He forgives. He loves so abundantly and sometimes we forget How much he loves. Sometimes we take it for granted yet He still loves. Thank you for sharing your story. God bless.

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    1. Thank you for taking the time to read it :)

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  3. Ren, this is a beautiful message and it really touched my heart. What so many don't realize is we all have our demons, demons of fear, worry, stress, unforgiveness...and the list could go on and on. Our Father forgives us, He loves us and He does not want any of us to perish but have everlasting life. It is so wonderful that you found Him, or He found you, either way, it's wonderful. I still don't know if He found me or I found Him, doesn't matter, I just know I belong to Him forever! ((hugs))

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement. I really appreciate it!

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  4. Ren, thank you so much for sharing how the redeeming love of Jesus has saved your life. And thank you for not allowing satan to convince you that you're not worthy to share it! Without the redeeming blood of Jesus our hands are filthy, blistered, oozing, slimy conduits of death. But because of His blood, we can actually touch others in prayer, and raise them in praise to the only One. OK, I'm getting teary just thinking of who we were before Him and who we are now... WOAH!
    Blessings and love, my friend ~ Mary

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    1. I love this comment Mary! Thank so much!

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  5. Hi Ren, love this great reminder that God's forgiveness covers all things. Even those things others consider way out there. Truth is we all have sinned but God made a way to reunite us to Himself. How great is his love toward us.

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  6. What a POWERFUL testimony Ren!! Just like God isn't it, to use what we did in the world for His glory! Now you're radical for HIM...LOVE IT!! So glad you're on our side now girl! Lol!! Thanks so much for sharing your story Ren and thanks for linking up! Have a wonderful rest of your week!

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    1. Michell, every time I wonder if maybe I shouldn't have posted a post, I get a wonderful comment from you cheering me on.. Thanks so much for that!

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  7. It was odd hearing it for me too. But it's also more evidence that God's story is so much bigger than our story - than what we can see or conceive. Those things were awful, and the source they came from evil - but your story is one that encourages and leads others to stronger faith.

    In a day and age where people are SO jaded, your story gives HIM glory - and THAT is all that matters.

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    1. Thank you.. That means a lot to me :)

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  8. Ren, what an awesome testimony of how God was working behind the scenes for your future! He can make the impossible possible, and there are limitless possibilities for us if we are willing to put our faith and trust in Him. Your hands are now blessed to offer hope and comfort!

    God bless you sister; your story is awe-inspiring! :)
    Denise

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  9. Ren, you are so brave and such a heart for Jesus. Have a blessed week!

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  10. Ren, Thanks so much for stopping by and linking up at My Four Monkeys! LOVE this post and such a great reminder of God's forgiveness. You are so humble and reverent. :) Hope to see more posts linked up from you soon! ~ Angie

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    1. That may be the first time anyone has ever used the word 'humble' to describe me.. LOL Thanks!
      And thanks again for hosting!

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  11. Wow, Ren, you have an amazing testimony. Isn't it good that we serve a GOD who is more than able to turn our lives around? He is so good in that HE gives us a fresh start regardless of what people in the world may think about us. Have a blessed week!

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    1. I absolutely agree! Thanks so much :)

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  12. Ren, What a powerful testimony!!! Thank you for sharing!!! I would love for you to guest post at "She Stands" I will be adding this to my favorites as well!!! Your transparency and honesty is full of God's grace and mercy!!!
    Sending you hugs my friend!!!!
    Many blessings to you!!!!!

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    1. Thank you! Coming from someone whose writing I admire, it means a lot!

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  13. Shoot me an email at Swilson4560@gmail.com and lets chat about a guest post!!! I would LOVE to have you!!!!!! YOu are a woman that "STANDS" and you have so much to offer others!!!

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Love your comments! Thanks so much!