“Guilt sucks the life out of our souls. Grace restores it. The apostle Paul clung to this grace. To the same degree that he believed in God’s sovereignty, he relied on God’s mercy.”- Max Lucado
Today, as found in Chapter 3 of Anxious for Nothing, Max Lucado discusses the final five ways we deal with our guilt.
5. Punish it. To assuage our guilt, we hurt, beat up, or flog ourselves. Although we may not use actual whips, we flog ourselves with rules. More rules. We compile long lists of things to do, observances to keep. Pastor Lucado refers to this as “painful penance.”
6. Avoid the mention of it. Just don’t bring it up – don’t tell your family, minister, or friends. Thus, Max notes, you “keep everything on the surface and hope the Loch Ness monster of guilt lingers in the deep.”
7. Redirect it. Rather than relying on God’s grace restoring your soul, you find innocent targets for your guilt. You take it out on family, yell at employees or that driver who just cut you off.
8. Offset it. Here you determine never to make another mistake as you seek perfection in your family, career, appearance, or Christian faith. This way you stay in control. In addition, you develop total intolerance for slipups or foul-ups of others or yourself.
9. Embody it. Here you embrace your badness. Also, you even take pride in it. And since you’re bad to the bone, it’s only a matter of time until you do something bad again.
In conclusion, Pastor Lucado observes, unresolved guilt creates an anxious person. A person “forever hiding, running, denying, pretending.” Furthermore, living such a lie produces exhaustion. However, as Max reminds us, grace restores the life that guilt sucks out of our souls.
Today’s question: What Bible verses help you understnad that God’s grace restores life to your soul? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “The severity of sin, the immensity of grace”