I am loved and accepted.
I am fully redeemed.
I possess infinite worth.
He hath made us accepted in the beloved. Ephesians 1:6
Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine… Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you. Isaiah 43:1, 4 (NIV)
You are my servant; I have chosen you and have not rejected you. Isaiah 41:9-10 (NIV)
I Have No Value.
As A Result My Choices, Decisions, and Circumstances,
I’m Damaged Goods, Worthless, and Disposable
Within every human heart is a longing for love, acceptance, significance and value. Tragically, humanity’s fall into sin not only separated us from God, but also introduced evil into our lives. Like Adam and Eve, our attempts to satisfy our desires independently from God, leave us feeling damaged, empty, unloved, and hopeless.
The Samaritan woman’s pursuit for love left her experiencing all these emotions. Her culture and her choices set her up for rejection. Samaritans were dismissed by the Jews and believed to have no value. They considered any vessel handled by a Samaritan unclean and defiled. With a string of five husbands, plus the current lover, this woman’s domestic arrangement was not only culturally unacceptable but unthinkable in the first century. Even the Samaritans discarded her worth and shunned her life-style.
Like the couple in the Garden, her sin sent her into hiding. During the heat of the day, while others found a protective spot away from the open sun, this social outcast emerges to fill her water jar away from the disapproving glances and judgmental stares of others. Her physical body had a better chance of surviving the scorching sun than her heart had in enduring further emotional rejection.
We’ve all made choices we’ve regretted, spoke words we’re unable to take back. The longing for love, and the unloving actions of others and ourselves, make it natural for us to want to hide away from society and from God. Yet, our emotions expose us. There’s no hiding away from the guilt, regret, and our shameful past.
Instead of allowing us to hide away, Christ approaches us. Our sin, not our strong moral character caused Him to come to earth. Like the Samaritan woman, he shares his complete knowledge of our sin thereby inviting us to come out of hiding and into facing our empty pursuit that led us into sin. Christ then invites us to find our acceptance in Him, to embrace the unconditional love from the genuine source, to discover our worth from the one who created us, and to live fully free in his acceptance.
An encounter with Christ brings more than forgiveness of a sordid past, it births a life impacting discovery of one’s untarnished value and worth before Christ. The result of this kind of love ignites us with boldness and confidence. This woman eagerly returned to the community that shunned her and invited them to come, see, hear, and meet the Promised Messiah. Her acceptance of Christ’s love and forgiveness and the discovery of her identity and purpose in Him, transformed her and sent her out to invite others to discover The Messiah. Within two days, these new converts experienced a deepened discovery of Christ and knowledge of God’s Word that transformed their lives.
Turn today to Christ and turn away from the rejection of others and your own self-rejection. In doing so embrace His acceptance and receive His empowering love.
Father, I’m tired of my empty pursuits for love, acceptance, and approval through others. Help me to turn away from false sources and to turn to you. Help me to live in the awareness that your death at Calvary is greater than my past and powerful enough to enable me from this day forth to live a life that glorifies you.
How does Christ’s acceptance and redemption help you overcome feelings of guilt, shame, condemnation?
Do you have thoughts of the past or areas of regret that make it challenging to accept Christ’s love and acceptance?
Thoughts to Ponder
Your life has been redeemed. You may not be walking it out, embracing it, believing it, transformed by it’s truth, nonetheless, you are accepted and have been redeemed.
Until we accept and embrace God’s love, we will not be changed by it.
Quotes to Consider
“What is notoriously missing from the external, mechanized concept of salvation is self-acceptance, an experience that is internally personalized and rooted in the acceptance of Jesus Christ. It bids good riddance to unhealthy guilt, shame, remorse, and self-hatred. Anything less-self-rejection in any for-is a manifest sign of a lack of trust in the total sufficiency of Jesus’ saving work. He has set me from the fear of the Father and dislike of myself, or has he not?…Unbounded trust in the merciful love of the redeeming God deals a mortal blow to skepticism, cynicism, self-condemnation, and despair.”
Ruthless Trust by Brennan Manning pf. 7-9