Tuesday, May 31, 2011


i have been challenged for real lately: do i truly believe in unconditional love?
i mean we all want to say that we would love someone, whether it be a friend, mate, or family member, unconditionally. without ANY conditions. in every situation. in every single hurt and state of sorrow. if they hurt you in a way that is seemingly inexcusable.
what are your conditions?
for me, i feel like it is a lot easier to accept another person unconditionally, excuse the behavior of someone i love, than myself. they can hurt me, but i can't fail myself. when i see sin in my life i haven't noticed before, to me its inexcusable, and i'm really good at beating myself up over it.
others can be faulty. but not me, i have to be perfect.
otherwise i guess the world will end.
i am way too hard on myself. and i'm not preaching a love thy-self before God message, but i seriously have issues accepting that i sin, and that i have faults. with loving who i am, where i am. 
does God even really love me like that? He loves the sinner, unconditionally but hates the sin. its hard for me to believe this and sometimes the lies of satan are way too loud. it's putting a double standard on myself--others are allowed to fail, but i can not.
in my sinful heart of hearts, i believe i excel at legalism. i mean i can win an award at "doing" things for God. i can be more spiritual, volunteer, encourage people, better than the best. i really excel at looking like i have it altogether.
someone once told me legalism in religion is a lot like tying a ball and chain to your leg that's already been cut by the Grace and Mercy of God.
let go of the freaken ball and chain already natalie.
all of those works don't matter anyways. all of that "i have it altogether" guess what, it doesn't exist, and it means nothing to God, in fact it's bloody rags to Him.
dirty bloody rags.
and that's the crux of it. getting in college and realizing that i have "issues," that the dream of perfection i 'seemed' to have attained by being the 'perfect' one in highschool is a bunch of baloney.
and yet for all of that, God loves me still.
i don't know how, but He does.
The most quoted verse in the Bible at weddings:
Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, etc...... 
love keeps NO record of wrongs.
so then why in the world do i keep a record of wrongs about myself yet, i can excuse others quite easily?
why can't i accept the GRACE that the Lord has lavished on me? and why can't i extend His grace to myself?

and looky there, i'm beating up on myself for not accepting the grace of God.
you see, it's a vicious, tricky cycle.

God never said it wouldn't be hard, but He did say it would be worth it.
and if by going through this challenge i find a greater understanding of Grace and unconditional love, then i know this spiritual challenge will be completely worth it.

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I'm a sister, a daughter, a student, an aspiring museum exhibit developer, an Auntie Nattles to two precious babes, and a Nanny Nats to others. Above all, I am a Christ-follower. A sister, a friend, a lover, a possession, a daughter, and a woman, redeemed and accepted by the gracious and forever love of Christ. The purpose of this blog is to illustrate the latter and paint a picture for you and I to recognize and enjoy the mysterious, glorious, and timely wonders of the Lord among you all. Then Joshua said to the people, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you." Joshua 3:5

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