Some of you have read my story. I had no desire to write or blog, but I started writing due to a tragedy. I ended up with a book contract.
This weekend I spoke at an international women’s conference. Another thing I hadn’t pursued.
I led a couple of small workshops yesterday afternoon.
In one workshop on finding peace in grief we went through various passages looking at what we could learn about God. We underlined the word Lord and any pronouns referring to Him. Then we created a chart titled Truth About God for Troubled Hearts with four columns labeled:
- Who God Is – His nature, His character traits, any names or titles given in the passage
- What – what God has done for us or what He does for us
- Promises – what He promises to do for us
- Me – my response to the truth, what is required of me, how to apply these truths in my life
One of the passages we studied was Psalm 103. We looked at the whole psalm, but something special happened when we got to verses 8-10.
“The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.” Psalm 103:8-10
We discussed that Jesus paid for our sins on the cross. All of them. We are forgiven if we are in Christ, if we believe in Jesus. God does not punish us for our sins, because they are forgiven. We may face natural consequences of our actions which hurt, but they are not punishment from God for our sin.
One older lady in the front row began to cry, tears running down her face. They continued to fall through the rest of the seminar.
We continued with the lesson, but I talked to her after. I asked her what was wrong.
“I’ve always thought my husband’s death was my punishment for my sin. I am a Christian but have done ugly things in my life. For seven years I’ve thought I’d have to live the rest of my life with the guilt and shame of being the cause of his illness,” she said through her tears.
“But you know God doesn’t repay us according to our sins? You know that because of Jesus, you are forgiven? You know God doesn’t punish you for sins that have been forgiven?” I gently asked.
She looked up at me with tear-stained cheeks, peace in her eyes, and a joyful smile on her sweet face, and said, “I do now.”
This woman was set free from guilt and shame by truth she learned for herself directly from God’s Word.
God’s Word matters. It’s true! It will set people free!
This is why I write and do what I do. Not to gain followers or get likes. But to help hurting people heal and to see captives set free!