We are so excited about the baptisms at Brown's. The news from home has been very exciting. God is still in the business of changing lives, including mine. I have been really challenged here in Costa Rica. Our last speaker talked about how much Christ loves us, not because of anything we do, but just because that is the way it is. You would think we already know this and we do when we are saved, but we seem to get confused along the way. We think, "Hey, I've been a Christian for 10 years. I'm doing pretty good so God must love me, at least in part, because of what I'm doing for Him." Or, we think, "I've been a Christian for 10 years and l'm a mess. God must be so disappointed in me." So we live either with pride, or with a sense that God is disappointed. We forget that Christ loves us no matter what. He wants our obedience, but that doesn't add to his love.
I have been feeling that way for a while-that God is disappointed in me. Why can't I do more? Why can't I forgive more easily? Why can't I keep my mouth shut? How can God be pleased with me- He has given me every opportunity in life and shouldn't I have more to show for it? It seems like I was doing better at 20 than I am at 35! It was a real shock to admit what I was feeling. I was trying to earn the love of Christ and not succeeding. I guess I needed to be reminded of the Gospel again- that God so loved the world...while we were yet sinners Christ died for us... We don't stop being sinners and we don't stop being loved. I am going through my Bible right now and underlining every reference to God's love for me. It should be fun.
Love to you all from Jesus Christ and from me,
Amen and Buenas Noches