[O]ften those of us that follow Jesus can find it emotionally challenging to let go of the shame of our sins.
It is valid to experience shame that accompanies our guilt before the only holy God when we are in our sinfulness for He is perfect and we aren’t. The sense of shame that accompanies our recognition of how we’re sinful, however, isn’t God’s ultimate goal. Our recognizing Him, coming into a right relationship with Him on His terms then worshiping, glorifying and enjoying Him is. Once we’re forgiven based on the blood sacrifice of Jesus, He sees us through His grace as perfectly sinless; the shame should lead to repentance and then freedom and a deep sense of value as we realize the living God loves us but often we get hung up on what demons, our messed up human brains and our fellow humans tell us.
My mind understands manhood backwards. I’ve grown older thinking much of what I saw around me as “manly” was the definition of “being a man.” It isn’t necessarily.
Jehovah, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, defines the characteristics and behaviors of men and His definition is unchanged in the face of my predecessors’ or my contemporaries’ thoughts, feelings on the matter or choices.
I’ve made the mistake of thinking my salvation is primarily about me. To be sure, God’s love is for me but a deeper reason He saves is for His purposes and to bring glory to Himself.
In my myopic existence I don’t focus my attention on Jesus. I often consider my benefits and blessings, which are truly benefits and blessings and I should recognize them as such and thank God for them but His purpose goes beyond just saving me; He saves me as a testimony to His faithfulness, His grace, His love, His patience and His sovereignty. His desire is to see all people choose Him and enter into an eternal relationship with Him but in Paul’s case, specifically: