Last night I had a dream:
My sisters and I were trying to run away from something that held us captive. In the process, we had to run through someone's backyard. Well, the lady who was inside saw us and started following us. We tried to escape (through her house), but instead found ourselves trapped in a room with the lady right at our heels.
Frantic, I told my sister to call the police and tell them that some lady was holding us hostage (which wasn't true). Somehow (as dreams go), the police got there before the woman got to us and arrested her. Right after my sister called the police, I realized that I was condemning an innocent lady, probably to a death sentence or something (keep in mind that dreams aren't realistic!). I also realized that she could simply tell the police that what we said was wrong and probably have evidence to back her up.
But she didn't. She must've seen the fright in our eyes or something, but for some reason, she let the police handcuff her without trying to break away. I suddenly felt so overcome with shame that I ran over and gave her a hug, apologizing over and over (I have no idea where the police were then). She insisted that it was totally okay, and that I shouldn't worry about her and that she forgave me. This lady actually took the punishment that we were supposed to get, and she took it for complete strangers who didn't know her! I thanked her over and over, still astonished that someone would do something like that! I probably said sorry like twenty times, still full of guilt and shame. But she was full of peace- she didn't talk back to the officers as they got her in the car, or question why she was being arrested. She just went with it, even with a smile on her gentle face!
After waking up this morning, I realized that what the lady did for my sisters and I in the dream is similar to what Jesus did for us. Now, don't get confused, Jesus was, indeed, a man, and fully God and fully human. This is just a comparison, an analogy of Jesus' sacrifice.
Ever since we were born, we were trying to survive on our own, to be free by our own strength, and to run away from misery and evil, like in the dream when we (my sisters and I) are running away in the beginning.
But then Jesus came into the story. He was not trying to hurt us, only trying to heal us and help us (in the dream, the woman who was after us did not seem angry when she was pursuing us).
Jesus was then wrongly condemned by you and me and sentenced to death for something He was not guilty of, just like the woman in the dream. Jesus took all the blame, all the guilt, all the shame, all the sin on His own shoulders for people who didn't know Him- though He knew us- without resisting, without anger, without resentment. Jesus could have called down a multitude of angels. He could've easily broken through the nails that held Him to the cross. But He didn't, just like the lady who didn't speak against my lie. No, it was in love that Jesus died for our sins. God loved us so much that He sent His only Son to die on a cross for us. Jesus took the punishment away from us so that we could go free, just like how my sisters and I could go free after the lady was taken away and punished for my sake.
AND HE FORGAVE US.
Can you believe it? Someone who we condemned to death still loved us, still died for us, and still forgave us. Who would do something like that?
His name is JESUS.
Maybe He's knocking on the door of your heart right now, waiting for you to open up and let Him help you and heal you and forgive you. I encourage you, don't wait any longer! He knows your past, your present and your future and yet God still loves you and still wants YOU. Don't let fear control you any longer. I encourage you to cry out to Him, to pray, and to ultimately let Jesus in so He can sit down onto the throne of your heart.
And maybe for some of you, you've heard the gospel story many many times and the fact that Jesus, the Son of God died on the cross for you is starting to wear off. Maybe you've started to take it for granted. Maybe you've started going back to your old life and your old habits. I urge you, fight against it. What Jesus did for us is something we shouldn't take lightly. He DIED for us. But don't you ever forget that He ROSE AGAIN and defeated death for YOU!
He has done so much for you. Jesus was condemned falsely, was killed, and He also rose again to set you free. I mean, HALLELUJAH! PRAISE THE LORD! THANK YOU, JESUS!
If a complete stranger had just saved your life, wouldn't you have offered a reward or done something to show how thankful you are and how much you appreciate what he did for you?
God not only saved you from death- He freed you from the bondage of sin, forgave you, and gave you a second chance at life. And GOD loves you, today and yesterday and forevermore. Don't you want to give something back to Him?
Give Him your E N T I R E H E A R T. Give Him your A L L.
Give Him your O B E D I E N C E.
Give Him an ear ready to L I S T E N to H I S C A L L.
Give Him E V E R Y T H I N G.
He is waiting patiently for you in love. And because of Jesus' sacrifice, we can be
"I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but take heart;
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"I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all of my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds."