Have you ever done something dumb and thought you had to do something not dumb to make up for the dumb thing that you did? Okay let me put it in a simpler term since my brain is bouncing around like a Chihuahua today…Have you ever done something bad and thought that you had to do something good to make up for the bad?
Right now I’m dating a girl named Katelyn. One time Kate brought me to this Mexican restaurant for a date. I was already pretty fussy going into the date, not because I don’t like Mexican food, but because I don’t like non-authentic Mexican food. Who here likes Taco Bell? Yeah well that’s not real Mexican food…except I do love that five layer burrito, and the bathroom trip that arrives after the five layer burrito.
So anyways, back to the story. We got a table, sat down, and began discussing what it’s like to be a college student. The conversation went well, but then I got my food. The taco was uninteresting in stature. The meat actually scared me a little. The smell was distasteful. I also asked for a soft taco shell, but they brought me a crunchy, softish, maybe has been sitting in the back of the kitchen too long kind of shell. So that made me a little bit fussier.
Kate began saying things like, “when I get to college, I’m going to go to all of my classes.” Which my response was, “I’ve been in college for more than a semester and I barely wake up for my 8 AM.” She started saying things like, “I’m actually interested in what I’m studying” and, “I’m going to be paying for my education so I’m going to go.” I didn’t believe her. Her next response was, “I already go to all of my classes now.” And that’s when I said it. Something so dumb, I couldn’t believe it slipped out of my mouth. I regret saying it to this very day.
“If you go to all of your classes then why do you have a 2.0 GPA?” Okay don’t get me wrong. Having a 2.0 doesn’t make you a stupid person, but to Katelyn it was like I was calling her the dumbest person I’ve ever met. In my defense, I didn’t mean it.
So I immediately apologized like the good, holy, just, and perfect boyfriend that I am (sarcasm). And to try to win her love back I asked to buy her a chocolate brownie milkshake, and she took the bait. The point of the story is I did something bad, and I felt like I had to do something good to make up for the bad and win her love back.
Have you ever played the game The Sims? This game is a life simulator that lets you generate and play a person’s life. During the game play your character must make relationships with other characters in order to achieve happiness. There’s a friendship meter in the game that shows how close you are to another Sim. The more you interact, and the more you show interest in somebody else, the more the meter goes up, but every time you stopped interacting or pursued a negative action, the meter went down.
I used to view Jesus like a character from the Sims. Our relationship was based on a meter. The more I spent time reading my Bible, praying, and worshiping Him, the more He liked me. I wanted to accomplish a 100% relationship with God just so He’d love me. Just so He’d talk to me. Just so He’d want me.
But when I started to mess up, I thought my meter with Jesus went down. If I listened to the wrong type of music, my meter went down. If I accidentally cussed, my meter went down. If I lied to one of my friends, my meter went down. If I sinned, my meter went down.
Sometimes I messed up in life. I believed my meter with Jesus would spike down because I didn’t spend enough time with Him. I thought Jesus was upstairs looking down at me, shaking His head, and turning His back to go show His love to someone else. So in order for me to regain His love I’d have to go and do something good to make up for the bad that I’ve done.
I feel like I’m separated from Christ.
This is a misconception in Christianity today. We believe that Jesus’ love is based off of our own doings. When our Jesus love bar is low we have to do spiritual things to get it back up. But that is not the case.
Jesus will never stop loving you.
Our good deeds don’t define Jesus’ love. Jesus dying on the cross defines His love for us. He loves us so much that He took our punishment. He loves us so much that He took our pain. He loves us so much that He’s never going to stop loving us.
Sometimes I feel like I haven’t been living a credible Christian life. I feel like I’m separated from Christ. Sometimes I feel like I’m not good enough for Christ’s forgiveness. I feel like I’m separated from Christ. Sometimes I feel like I blame God for all my problems, worries, fears, anxieties, depressions, and whenever trouble arises in my life, I feel like I have to be the solution. I feel like I’m separated from Christ.
And so I end with this passage from Scripture.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered”. No, in all these things we are MORE than conquerors through Him who loved us. (start reading in a dramatic tone) For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our lord. (Romans 8:35-39)
Nothing can separate us from the love of Jesus. Nothing you do in this world can separate Jesus’ love for you. Through every sin, every hard time, and every mess up, Jesus will never stop loving you. This Jesus love meter is a lie. There’s only one meter, and it reads, “I’m never leaving you.”
Those times I feel like I’m not a credible Christian, Christ is saying “You are amazing.” Those times I feel like I’m not good enough for His love, Jesus is saying, “You are good enough.” Those times I feel like blaming God for my problems and I take my troubles into my own hands he’s saying, “give me your troubles!” And those times where I feel lost, Jesus is always saying, “I love you.”
You don’t have to go and change your life in order to get right with God. God is always reaching His hands down to us, and all we have to do is grab it.