You Are Not The Black Sheep Of God's Family!
Dirt by Mary Mary - https://youtu.be/TGOOH6ZTuXM
Limp by Jonathon McReynolds - https://youtu.be/fiWUUEH7p_0
Come Home by Tauren Wells - https://youtu.be/NyAq1JCDFdE
This wasn’t supposed to be the first substantive post in this little series, in fact it wasn’t part of it at all until today I think. As I sat, reading a book called Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers (given to me by my sister in Christ and fellow bookworm Akacia!) this statement rung in my mind as it often has before. You see this book is the telling of Hosea’s story….if Hosea’s story happened in 1800’s America. I found myself really identifying with the female protagonist and her struggles to find her worth in the midst of finding love in a man of God which she couldn’t come to terms with and then eventually in Christ Himself. Her struggle to see herself as her man and God saw her is something I definitely know about.
In fact, it was on a night when I was struggling with things along those lines when one of my best friends Bianca said these words to me, “You are not the black sheep of God’s Family!”. It was this past April she said those words and I still remember being blown away by what seemed like simple, hard and ultimately graceful words. Because on that night, like so many other nights I struggled to see anything but my mistakes. I can’t tell you reader how many times I have felt some version of “irredeemable” by God even as a Christian woman. Not because God couldn’t do it, not even necessarily because He wouldn’t but I felt like He had done it too many times, because of the same mistakes and honestly at this point probably just shouldn’t save me from myself again.
There I was, completely rejecting grace and my girl said NAH, NO and NOT TODAY SATAN in the most effective way possible. I was in awe; I remember not even responding immediately to her words and needing to sit with it. In that moment she had said so much to me, and I needed to hear it. I was giving up ground to satan in my mind’s mental battle just because I wouldn’t take God’s hand and let Him love me and intervene in a seemingly hopeless situation I had caused. The book’s protagonist up and left both her man and God behind so many times essentially feeling the same way, she was being given a beautiful thing that scared her to even think about much less actually accept. All I could think was that I understood, I understood completely.
Whether I knew it or not I often treated myself as an outcast chillin on the fringes of God’s kingdom. The worst and most disappointing of His children, one of those who “Put Jesus back pon di cross” as Jamaicans would say. And for what? Why? Why did I cast myself down so much? Why did I accept the enemy’s lies and discouragement? I still don’t think I have a real answer, though now I do think I’ve learned that those are the times I need to go running into my Father’s arms. Now I think in my head at least God has shown me that it’s one of the enemy’s tactics he has used against me effectively to keep me away from His loving arms when I need it most. Satan says that I’m too messed up, my mistake too great and too frequent for me to even think about approaching God’s holy throne. The enemy says I know God will forgive me but I know God shouldn’t forgive me or help me so I should stay away and not even give Him the chance. Somehow, he convinced me that I, God’s black sheep, needed to protect God from myself.
In those moments the enemy completely obscured my view. I couldn’t see salvation, I couldn’t see grace, I couldn’t see God’s love. I couldn’t see a grieving, patient Father staring up the road…waiting for His little Ruth to realise she made a mistake and she could just turn around and come home. So dear reader, I think you should know too, you are not the black sheep of God’s family. The darkness you feel right now or in your worst moments is the enemy’s attempt to hide the brightness of God’s grace from you and cripple you where you stand.
SEE AND BE FREE.