When the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.” – Titus 3:4-5 ESV
It was a horrible feeling, like being trapped in quicksand. The harder he tried to escape, the deeper he sank. Deeper and deeper, the pull could be fatal.
This was how Charles Gabriel, prolific hymn and anthem composer, pictured the impact of sin in a hymn he wrote, called “In Loving-Kindness Jesus Came,” also called “He Lifted Me.” Born in Iowa in 1856, Gabriel described how he had been sinking under the pull of sin until he gave his life to Jesus. Then, He lifted him out of a sense of hopelessness and the feeling of constantly sinking deeper into despair.
Instead of wallowing in “the depths of sin and shame,” through Jesus he was able to experience the grace of God. Gabriel realized he had been forgiven and set free because Jesus had died for him. Inspired by His great love, Jesus endured the agony of the cross. It was a freedom beyond Gabriel’s understanding and something that totally changed his life.
The world may suggest its remedies and tricks, but only Jesus can provide such a profound change, such total freedom.
Do you feel trapped by the sins of your past? Are you weighed down by guilt and worry? Do you feel like you are sinking under the weight of mistakes? Are the pressures of life making you hopeless and discouraged? Turn to Jesus. Confess the truths in His Word. Accept His forgiveness. Live in freedom.
Reflection Question: Write your burdens as a prayer, asking God to lift them from your heart.
Father, thank You for giving me freedom in Christ. I release my burdens to You. Thank You for Your forgiveness. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Today's Bible Reading