This blog documents in real time my experience of finding and experiencing The Pearl of Great Price as it happens. From pain to joy. First post was January 2013.
My efforts today are no longer to “NOT SIN”. My focus today is not to correct my behavior. Instead, my focus is to BELIEVE RIGHT(learn what is the True Truth of God about things – then work toward believing them).
I find that what is True according to God is SO INCREDIBLY GREAT that I experience unspeakable joy. I get a sense of wholeness. Like, “All Is Well!”. The 9 Fruit of the Spirit effortlessly well up in me. Think of all 9 of them: Love….Joy….Peace….Patience….Kindness….Goodness….Faithfulness….Gentleness….Self-Control. They are effortlessly present in my experience. Remember, Jesus said that when we know the Truth, it will SET US FREE. I’m having such a party then, that I find that my pet sins would really interrupt the party. Usually, I decide, “Naahhh. I’m not interested in this sin or that sin. This party is too good, just the way it is.” And, if on occasion I decide I just can’t resist this sin or that one, I go ahead and let myself partake. I’m quickly reminded that the party would have been better without sin.
BTW, my sin behavior is withering and dying. By focusing on believing the Truth of God. Rather than trying to correct my behavior.
This blog documents in real time my experience of finding and experiencing The Pearl of Great Price. From pain to joy. First post was January 2013,
Until my Grace Awakening, I had never experienced the diminishing of my desire to sin, my addictions, as my churches said I should. It was always a struggle. The desire for this or that addicted behavior never went away – never got less powerful. After Grace, they are gone or well on their way to being gone. I now know why.
Addictions are our way to have some control of our feelings/emotions. In the non-Grace life (as most Christians live), there is so much emotional pain from fear of God, self-loathing and sense of personal failure that we desire escape. Addictions are what we turn to for this purpose, whether it’s shopping or pornography or over-eating or over-working or video games – the list is endless.
When Grace becomes True to you, and the peace and joy (Fruit of the Spirit, remember?) comes in, we would rather experience this Fruit un-diluted by addictions. We find that they “ruin our good time” of Grace by indulging in addictions. This is real. I’m living it. If you read more of my blog, you would know I’m honest about these things and I can be trusted as I report this to you.
Whether you actively engage in your addictions, if you still strongly desire them, you haven’t yet full experienced God’s Grace. Never fear. You’re entirely forgiven. But you’re missing the party. And what a party it is.
ANALOGY: People fall deeply and romantically in love with another person. It’s very joyful. But, often, this new relationship also creates an element of fear because the thought of going back to the way it was before the relationship becomes very scary. Some sensitive people become obsessed, always looking for clues that might indicate that the relationship may be in danger for this reason or that.
I am that way right now about the 100% Grace of God. Since understanding this in the last 24 months, my depression/anxiety is gone, all 9 Fruit of the Spirit are growing effortlessly, I’m so happy that it’s actually hard for some people to spend too much time with me, etc. etc. Things are great.
Along with this, I’m aware of a hint of fear. Fear that I may lose this wonderful Grace Place I’m now experiencing. I never want to lose it. This is much stronger and more profound than simply falling in love with a wonderful woman. I can feel this fear when I read a new Bible passage that I can’t make sense of through my new Grace lens. I get advice from some brothers to deal with those passages head-on and fearlessly. Study them and get them resolved in your mind and heart. Because this Grace Gospel is True and we never need to fear losing it’s joy. Others ask me why I’m obsessively and fearfully trying to “fully understand this Grace Gospel intellectually – and you will never be able to do that”.
Don’t worry about me. I’m not suffering that badly. But, I’m writing this because I want to document my journey, as I said I would when I started this blog. The other reason I’m writing this is that it may give some comfort to others who have tasted God and seen that He is good and may begin to fear “losing” the paradise feelings they have day by day as they remember their decades of suffering without it. I want them to know that they are not alone. At least one other fellow traveler is experiencing this from time to time.
I’m certainly open to input from more mature Grace believers.
Please read this to the end. It’s not what you think.
I got angry at my wife this morning in an argument. I left in the car to avoid any further angry dialogue. While driving, I was having a very angry “day-dream” about how she had hurt me so and how angry I was at her. BUT…I was able to remember that my job/focus at this point of the conflict was not primarily to “behave right”. But, was instead, to BELIEVE RIGHT! Sound familiar?
Well, my angry daydream wouldn’t stop for maybe 20 minutes as hard as I tried to dismiss it. It was like a fog preventing me from shifting my focus to BELIEVING RIGHT! Eventually, the fog cleared and I was (1) able to focus on what I was believing that was making me so angry and (2) to compare it to what God says is True.
Well, I figured out (1): What was making me so angry was that I was relying (as I do so often) on my WIFE to provide assurance of my righteousness (my status as a good and worthwhile person) by saying certain words of appreciation that I thought were warranted. And she was not providing this up to what I think I needed and deserved. As for (2): God says that any other human being, including spouse, is NOT an adequate source to which to turn to provide my sense of righteousness. God Himself is the ONLY source for this reassurance of righteousness. So, the whole problem in this argument was that I had left the Truth of God. I was requiring my sweet wife to provide for me what only God can reliably provide (assurance that I am a good and worthwhile person)
I sought her out and told her this. My angry feelings left me. I sought her out to tell her that the argument had been my fault. I had remembered the Truth and it had, once again SET ME FREE!!!!!!! Argument OVER! She asked me if she could make me a cappucino :-).
Wow, no wonder Jesus said that our primary work is to believe rightly rather than do rightly. It is hard work sometimes. But the joy is huge.
When I first entered the Life of 100% Grace, I had a fear that, despite what scripture says, I could possible take advantage of the freedom and move into license. I am reporting today to you that this is not what has happened in any way. My loving behaviors of all kinds have increased since I understood how lavish and complete is the Grace of God. My fears of freedom have dropped away. I have experienced that this Gospel of 100% Grace did not free me to move into license. Actually, the reverse is True. But, it’s not because I’m trying. It’s because I am trusting in the Grace of God which has “constrained” me. It’s TRUE! Once again, the words of scripture are TRUE.
Experiencing God’s Grace fully includes a feeling that you don’t want anything you don’t already have. At least that’s the way it is for me. And I believe that it lines up with Ephesians 1:3. But, you can FULLY enjoy all you do have.
Not wanting anything you don’t have frees you from the striving most all of us have most all the time. We think if the kids just get a little older, if we lived in a nicer neighborhood, if we had a different job or spouse, things would be much better for us. But, without the spiritual blessings mentioned in Ephesians 1, no change in our earthly experiences will deliver the peace and joy our soul desires.
Obvious. But, I want to document that this is what I’m experiencing much of the time. Complete satisfaction with the spiritual blessings God has provided. I’m so happy much of the time, I’m driving people around me crazy! Remember King David dancing in the parade? That’s me often.
To me, this is beautiful and profound. I got it from another blog. If you’re ready for this…enjoy. It’s exactly what I have experienced in my search for The Pearl of Great Price.
Grace preachers often neglect the ordained process by which we enter into grace, a process that includes exertion and complete failure while feeling the full force of the law, as well as a deep revelation of our sinfulness and lack without Christ. We cannot skip that step directly into grace. Holiness preachers often neglect to preach purely the means by which we attain power, the utter inability we inherently have to do the smallest holy thing, and the path of failure unto trusting completely in God alone for life. True grace doesn’t lower the standard of holiness, it raises it. We can’t ‘try’ to do the NT commands, and if you are preaching a “get as close as you can,” that is not enough. The Pharisees misinterpreted what the law really asked of them because the demand, the holiness, is a state of the heart, not the outward actions at all. Christ simply did not say “just try to be perfect.” The truth is, holy-demanders are asking us to do something we cannot do and sloppy-gracers are telling us we don’t have to achieve holiness. The solution is not Jesus helping us, it’s Jesus living his life through us. If our holiness is not a supernatural miracle we could never produce, then it’s not real! And this miracle happens when we maintain faith in God’s ability. Neither sloppy-gracers nor holy-demanders show us the complete path of partaking in the new life we find in a complete union with Christ.