I woke up in the morning, I went out, walked for quite sometime with friends, looked back to the place I headed off, I went back so exhausted, I said I call it a day, I said I think I ‘ve done well today, I woke up the next morning, I read His words, I wept.
Sadness is probably the word that I’ve been contemplating in the last few weeks, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that I’ve been experiencing the sadness throughout the time, but how it shows different things in my life. This time it is showing me how sadness and specifically tears could be an entering of new phase of life, or new chapter in the journey.
Wouldn’t be hurt to tell again who I am. I am 27 years old, Indonesian male, have been a Christian whole my life, but have only been following Jesus in the last 4 years. I’ve been repenting a lot on my mistakes and sins I committed. In the past I used to do physical punishment, like slapping my face, or punch on my face every time I pray to God asking for forgiveness. Surely God has been forgiving me more that I have ever asked, but the question is, do I really know how damaging the sin I committed for my life, for His relationship with me, and for others people. Yes there was guilt , yes there was fear, but do I know how sad the heart of my Father is? and He is still loving me, and forgive me all the time.
One is wondering whether how many more someone will be forgiven, or when do we know that we are forgiven, and still how do we know when we are really confessing or how does it feel when we are in state of despising or acknowledging the sin we committed. Can I just say God I am sorry? Perhaps Not, that’s not enough.
Philip Yancey said in his book What’s so amazing about Grace, that forgiveness will only be given to those who are worthy to be forgiven. Those who are worthy to be forgiven are those who committed sin, if not what would he be forgiven for in the first place? He mentioned about our tendency to be Abusing Grace it is when we can say “I will be forgiven next time, so should be alright”. Cheap Grace is the term Dietrich Bonhoeffer use to name the decimating thought of receiving Grace.
In the last 6 months I ‘ve been in one of the most challenging and confronting phase in my life. In the banner of bringing the kingdom of God in earth, I was walking promoting it and in the same time walking in darkness of hurting people, dehumanizing self-reserved behavior, driven to finish the jobs, and losing quality time for those I love, and the worst case steeping away from God’s love and holiness. Still the embroiderer in my lavish uniform is badge of bringing the God’s Kingdom.
Then..I went home, well actually, I ran away to my home, finishing the task and wanted to rid everything and chuck in to the bin. I asked God for forgiveness for all the terrible things I did 4 months ago it was, I confessed everything before Him. I recovered, and keep doing God’s work until 4 months later.
In Sydney I was, early morning when I took my journal and bible, and inadvertently I opened the Gospel of Luke, in chapter 18 about the Pharisee and tax collector who stood before the Lord, the pharisee prayed that he is basically making report to God about the deeds he, on his view, guard it well, but few inches away quite opposite to him, a tax collector overwhelmed by his sin crying out to the Lord, as it is written
But the Tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but eat his breast and said, ‘God have mercy on me, a sinner
Luke 18 :13 NIV
He showed me that God will take account any transgression I did, showed it to me how terrible it was, and then forgave me. I couldn’t help myself but wept for hours, I felt the pain of My Lord, and then the Love of my Lord. I don’t need to say to my self, that I am alright now, I am forgiven, I can keep going, but He, Jesus will do it to me, in his perfect time.
Richard Foster,in his book “Prayer”, call that as a Acts of Contrition, it is when we are realizing that God never despise and ignore, the broken and contrite heart. How if then we felt Numb? and felt nothing. He suggested ..keep asking, we keep knocking… let me receive the gift of tear. Kyrie, Eleison (Lord, have mercy). In my case I did feel I was sinning, but I sense no spiritual feeling for forgiveness,I was seeking hi scomfort, but I wasn’t intentionally seeking, but God directs me to find him, and it is well when he found me 🙂
In the last 6 months I ‘ve been in one of the most challenging and confronting phase in my life, but yet the tears and pain make up those 6 months as one of the most enriching phase of my life. Seek and you will find, ask and you will be given.
Perhaps our eyes need to be washed by our tears once in a while, so that we can see life with a clearer view again — Alex Tan