There is this invisible line in life that is referenced a million times in all sorts of situations.
“Don’t cross the line Madelyn” I’m sure we’ve heard it too many times to count.
Well I’m here to tell you that I did cross that line. I ran full force across it, never looking back and then proceeded to classify it as “fun” and “fulfilling”. Thinking back on my past makes me either want to crawl in a hole and never show my face again or laugh at myself for once being so stupid. It’s a common feeling I’m sure majority of us share. Our pasts often have the misconception of having the ability to taunt us, control our future, and holding us in its grip so tightly we feel as though there is no chance of moving forward. Well guess what, it has none of that power. And never will. So do not live your life allowing it to.
Here are a few tips I’ve concluded to myself and that have also helped me move through the difficult times, past all the guilt, and accepting Jesus’ forgiveness and unconditional love into my heart.
1) A C C E P T A N C E
Yeah. At one point in my life I was really ugly. Not appearance necessarily (besides middle school those days were rough) but my heart was really messy. My sin had consumed me and made for a gross, UGLY situation of a person. I’m sure my sins look different from yours, as yours will look different from the next person’s but the results never change. They make for a mess that we are not capable of cleaning up on our own. ACCEPT the fact that you have messed up, made awful mistakes that you can’t take back, and be willing to realize that you are far from the great and wonderful being you like to portray yourself as. But also accept yourself for the person you can be. Remind yourself that you were fearfully and wonderfully made in a perfect image. You still and always will hold the characteristics God has blessed you with.
2) B R E A K T H E C H A I N S
There is this common misconception that we as humans can do whatever we want because in the end as long as we repent Jesus will forgive us. Which is completely true, He will forgive us. But why not accept that forgiveness now instead of later? Why allow yourself to purposely make more of a mess instead of cleaning it up now? There is a ripple effect to sin. This meaning that your sins never only have a direct effect on you, but the others surrounding you also. They are the ones that take the brunt of it all and are in the path of all the consequences you will be facing.
Be brave enough to step into His gift of Grace. In order to do that though you actually have to let go, and let God. Not half way, not bit my bit, but completely and fully dump all your messes on Him. He is the only one that can carry that for you and is offering you complete freedom from everything holding you back everyday. Break the chains holding you back from living the life you were created for. Take joy from your past not because it was perfect but because you are forgiven, you are redeemed, you are wiped clean of your faults and considered a new creation through Christ.
3) M O V E
When you hit rock bottom (which you will, fast and hard) run with that same force you crossed all the lines with back in the direction of His open arms. They are waiting for you. They are longing for your return… to hold you, comfort you, protect you, and forgive you.
Once you have accepted that forgiveness and love that will truly never go anywhere… move forward. Hand in hand with your creator. Go accomplish the impossible, experience the power of God moving in your life and never let that feeling go.
Move away from the guilt no matter what. I know it has its own way of creeping into your thoughts and making you feel unworthy of your newfound life. But you are more than worthy.
I was once extremely lost, in my own way. Each step I took on my own was five steps farther away from God. I was messy. I had deemed myself unworthy, unlovable, and hopeless. Then I turned around. I ran as hard as I possibly could back into His arms. Back unto his light and into His love and he renamed me. I was then, in that moment, deemed beautiful, lovely, more than worthy, endlessly loved, and capable of accomplishing things that I never even imagined.
My Challenge to y’all:
No matter your past or even what you may be struggling with in your present be brave enough to notice that life is way too much to handle on your own. Give it to God and let go. Most importantly, surround yourself with a community that will hold you accountable for your actions, lead you in the right direction, and even when you slip up they grab your hand and walk with you through it.
Start each day with a big cup of coffee, a whole lot of Jesus and take on the world. One step at a time.
Lots of love for each and every one of you,