By Ashley Vaughan
Too much. Never enough. Unwanted. Failure. Too loud, too quiet, too much of a stickler for the rules.
Labels. They cut, wound, and leave scars. Living in a fallen world, we can accumulate labels from others as we go through life. We obtain these labels — intentionally or unintentionally, directly or by inference — from parents, siblings, coworkers, bosses, the list could go on. And where humans leave off, our own minds and/or the devil (that great accuser) are quick to pick up and run with it. “See? You messed up, you always mess up. You’re just a failure.” (Anyone relate, or is it just me?) This internal dialogue serves to entrench the labels even further into our hearts and minds.
Paul shares in 2 Corinthians 12:9 that God says, My grace is sufficient for you… (ESV). But what do you do when it feels like no one around you extends grace when you mess up? Not that there shouldn’t be natural consequences for sins/failures, but an attitude of grace and forgiveness can still be present in the midst of those consequences. And when that is missing, it’s tempting to think, “God, Your grace is great and all, but I have to live/raise/work with these people…”
Sitting in the middle of a rough week, this is something I’m wrestling with. And God brings to my mind a passage a friend brought up in small group last week.Read More