I heard this phrase “the brightest reflection of her redemption” in an article I happened upon researching another topic.
It reminded me of God’s ultimate design of marriage, to be a representation of the gospel and Jesus Christ.
It reminded me that marriage is not about me. Marriage is a covenant commitment to honor God by selflessly, intentionally, and honestly loving my spouse.
It reminded me that God’s perspective on marriage raises the bar, raising what seems temporary and minute and ‘not that big of a deal’ to eternal and transformative and redemptive.
It also reminded me to praise and thank God every minute for grace in His gospel, because my husband constantly witnessing what I reflect can be intense.
Because I’m a [sometimes loudly] imperfect human. We both are.
In Christ we are forever redeemed, our minds being renewed, being conformed more to Jesus, with the hope of a glorious future with God, but while walking this earth we’re still humans with a constant battle with sin.
The other night was a women’s ministry event complete with good food, laughter, and creativity. The speaker’s bread and butter was the ministry of relationships.
Her recent book is all about listening well, loving those in front of you, and relationships. She told of her new favorite practice, listening for heart drops.
The definition of a heart drop is (in Karen’s words): When a person, either directly or in a subtle way, gives you a peek into their heart. It may be through actual words, or you may pick up on a feeling, perhaps sadness or loneliness. It could even be a simple preference or “like” of theirs, such as their most-loved high-maintenance coffee drink or a favorite sports team.
I sat next to a only-known-for-a-year-but-love-dearly friend and told her in between dinner courses how overwhelmed I have been feeling lately.
A few days later, I opened up to the girls in my small group, friends (and they families) I have come to admire, trust, and love. I was honest about where I’m struggling and my raw emotions about my current situation.
They pointed me to Jesus and Scripture, but also were bummed with me.
They reminded me that they love me, and committed to pray for me.
Today I am especially overwhelmed with this thought: no matter what comes, whatever joy or circumstance or disappointment, Jesus remains. It’s simple and seemingly basic, but for me, today it is day-changing.
This morning I was up and doing a few tasks, feeling worry and doubt creep in, and then suddenly – peace. I am His, He is mine.
I have only felt that tangible of a peace river a handful of times. Undeniable, compelling, wonderful.
How beautiful and gracious our God is. No matter what comes, no matter what I feel, God remains. His care and love for me transcend all natural feelings.
“Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.” Psalm 91:14-16
The King James Version of the Bible says, “because he hath set his love upon me.”
These promises are real. We set our love on Him, he will deliver us. He protects us (from sin, from the enemy, from even ourselves) because we know His name. He answers when we call, when we reach out and talk, He is with us in times of trouble. He rescues us and honors us in Himself. He satisfies us with his salvation and freedom.
Thank you, Jesus.