"A Lion" by Sunshine Girl's big sister, Bright Girl
I'm still recovering from helping last week in our church's Vacation Bible School. The kids were great, but still, it's somehow just exhausting leading a group of Kindergartners all week long.
Sunshine Girl was pretty excited to find out I was going to be her group leader. She kept telling the other children, "that's my mommy," beaming her sunshiny smile.
All week long, we shared with the kids through skits, Bible verse memory, and songs that God loves them and sent His Son to rescue them and bring them into His family.
I don't know what kind of eternal effects serving the children there will be, but I know that seeds were sown and for that I am grateful.
It's Sunshine Girl who once humbly reminded me how much we need God. She was frustrated and had already lost a privilege or two for misbehavior.
"It's so hard to be good, Mommy," she muttered with a sigh.
Being good is not just hard, it's impossible.
We hunger and thirst to be good, to be good enough, to be righteous, but we all fail miserably...
"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23)
So, how do we possibly get this righteousness that we so desire?
By trying harder, being more "mature," being a good citizen?
Behind all that morality, our hearts are still sinful, idol making factories.
The way, the only way to be righteous is to give up all our efforts and to humbly come to Christ.
And, admit that we have failed. We've missed the mark, which is absolute holiness and perfection.
But, the thing is, Christ didn't. He lived a life of utter poverty and suffering and never once sinned. He never entertained one sinful thought and never gave in to any sort of temptation.
He lived the life we should have lived and died the death that we deserved to die for our sins. And, was raised again on the third day.
So, what does this mean for us?
It means when we put our trust in Christ's sacrifice for us, we are no longer considered sinners in the sight of God.
We receive the righteousness of Christ, are born again into God's family, and become heirs to the promise given by faith to Abraham.
"It was not through the law that Abraham and his offspring received the promise that he would be heir of the world, but through the righteousness that comes by faith." (Romans 4:13)
And when we come to an end of ourselves, we finally understand what it means to "hunger and thirst for righteousness."
It is then that we can come to Jesus for He declares,
“I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty." (John 6:35)
In Him is all the fullfillment of the law and in Him is eternal life--life everlasting!
What must we do to have this eternal life?
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved--you and your household." (Acts 16:31)
Realizing our salvation, sets us free from feeling unworthy, unloved, and without hope.
Through Christ we are holy and dearly loved and we have the power of the Holy Spirit to help us in our weaknesses and temptations.
Then, it isn't hard to be good anymore. Because by grace, we live in a constant state of righteousness. It's a free gift and Christ is faithful to work out in our lives what He worked in.
The more we seek God and His will, we will change and grow to become more and more like Christ.
Righteousness. It's different than being good.
We can stand in God's presence and lift up holy hands to Him in praise and prayer without fear and without shame of ever being rejected.
And Christ will give us the power we need to "walk the path of righteousness." (Psalm 23:3)
"The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion." (Proverbs 28:1)