More… So Much More

by DanWolgemuth on June 2, 2017

I’m sixty-two years old, and over the course of my life I’ve done two stupid and regrettable things. Not heinous, but wrong.

What’s amazing about reflecting on this subject is that I did some stupid and regrettable things yesterday.

Unfortunately, I keep getting in the way of my heartfelt desire to live in the full light of the glorious holy grace that I have been afforded. My heart and head agree that there’s more, that there’s a noble and lofty objective worth aspiring to. But then, I show up.

Now here’s the deal. I’ve mastered the art of polite sins. They masquerade as something acceptable, but they’re still wildly off the mark that God has established for those who carry His business card.

King David put it this way:

For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me. (ESV)

“Ever before me”… not as an image of shame, but as a lens of grace. A humbling reminder of a glorious gift. Mercy. Hope. Identity.

In the mission that I love and lead, we work with many young people who have offended the standard of God in far more conspicuous ways. Some have a felony record to prove it. At times I imagine what it would be like to be defined my entire life by an outrageous act that I did as a 14-year-old. I don’t linger long in that place… but many who walk beside us do. Unfortunately, they live there. For life.

In his compelling and important book, Just Mercy, Bryan Stevenson says this: “Each of us is more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.”

More. So much more.

This is the great exchange. My sins. His grace. Identity born anew.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17, ESV)

A new creation.

My darkest moment, my greatest failure… the aperture through which God focuses the intensity of His love.

There is no sin for which grace is not greater still. This is our Youth For Christ message to desperate teenagers sitting in lock-up. And it’s the message to the 62-year-old President that leads.

More polite. Absolutely. But a broken, selfish, ignorant, judgmental man.

Less polite. A pregnant 15-year-old. An incarcerated 17-year-old.

Polite or not… light obliterates the darkness.

Forgiveness lavished. Identity transformed.

Only in Jesus. Always in Jesus.

We are more. So much more.

By grace. Through Jesus.

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