Although we are practicing social distancing, the Gospel message remains unchained! This devotional is best with some time (20-30min), coffee/tea, and a notebook. Enjoy!
Healed & Whole
By: Samantha Jones
He personally carried our sins in His body on the cross [willingly offering Himself on it, as on an altar of sacrifice], so that we might die to sin [becoming immune from the penalty and power of sin] and live for righteousness; for by His wounds you [who believe] have been healed. For you were continually wandering like [so many] sheep, but now you have come back to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.
1 Peter 2:24-25 AMP
I’ve recently been suffering with newly diagnosed anxiety in my life. It has been a real struggle! I find myself fighting a battle within my mind like never before. The spiritual battle is so prevalent, and sometimes the lies of anxiety can feel like the truth & reality. Something will happen, and my mind will jump to telling me a story of all the possible things that could go wrong, or what this means for the rest of the day, week or my life! Even something as little as my son not sleeping well can have me thinking about how it could affect him as an adult when in reality, it’s just this one nap that is hard for him, or an extra ten minutes he takes to fall asleep. I can get stuck in my fears constantly thinking about the future. I can become obsessive over small things thinking if I can control that, that will be the answer that will fix everything.
Something that has been helping me is realizing it’s a spiritual battle in my mind, not just an earthly battle. Satan wants me to lose sight of the present, making me ungrateful & fearful- two things God doesn’t want us to be! I have to fight against Satan, not my baby’s schedule or what goes on in my home only. I have been focusing on being more present with my family & those around me. God saved us & gave us a relationship with Him so that we could be active participants in our present life, not focused on the past or worried about the future. When we’re focused on ourselves & our anxieties we can’t be a light to those around us.
As I’ve been working through these things I have a tendency to focus on feeling broken or useless for God. 1 Peter 2:24-25 reminds me that I’m healed already and whole, despite having weaknesses God wants me to work on. It doesn’t make me incomplete to have to fight the spiritual battle. God has already healed me & given me a savior to fill in where I’m weak.
He personally carried our sins so that we MIGHT die to sin. We have an active role here, to make that choice to die to sin & live for righteousness. We have a new chance because of his personal sacrifice for us. My sin is staying in my fear & being ungrateful for the gifts God has given me. To live for righteousness I can choose to be present with God & those around me. Anxiety can present itself many different ways in our lives & that is not the sin here- it’s when we stay hidden behind the sins that anxiety can bring into our lives, instead of deciding to live for Jesus & stand up to those- remembering we have been healed by His wounds! He is the Shepherd & Guardian of our souls!
Reflect: “By his wounds you have been healed”, how does that change the way you look at your weaknesses?
Q: What can make you feel like you’re “not enough”?
Q: In what ways does the message of the cross communicate to you that you are enough?
Q: What is the sin that comes as a result of your fear or anxiety?
Q: How can you be present with God and those around you when you are feeling anxious or fearful?
Challenge: Don’t stay hidden behind your sins, who can you confess to today in order to live a life of righteousness?