Sunday, October 25, 2015

Making Room for Jesus

When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was He said, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind." (Matthew 22:37) I want that with ALL that is in me. God made us to love Him and worship Him. We are to take up our cross daily and give ourselves up for Him. But, you know.... God loves us immeasurably more! We are His creation! My heart aches to know Jesus and have encounters with Him daily. However, it took some time to realize I wasn't able to give my whole heart because there wasn't enough room. Something was blocking Jesus from being able to take complete residence.

Several years ago, I began to feel like I was missing something. Something deep inside that I couldn't figure out. I was trying to get closer to God but I  couldn't shake the feeling like there was something in the way. I had some baggage and it was keeping my heart closed off from knowing all of God's love for me. There had been experiences in my past that had been haunting me for many, many years. I lived with decades of guilt, shame, unforgiveness, fear, and regret that cost me a lot of heartache. I allowed these "Enemies of the Heart" to affect my attitude, family, husband, and my kids and they were ultimately hindering my relationship with Christ. I was carrying A LOT of baggage.

Over time (and wrestling with God) the Holy Spirit shook me to the core and made me realize I had to release some things to God. I had to let it go, and let him have it.....all of it; my hurts, my unforgiveness ,my own sin, my shame, guilt, and regret. I had to release some experiences I had as a child and forgive the person for committing their sins against me. I had to own up to some of my own sins as well and reconcile those sins not only to God but to the person I hurt from that sin. (This was my biggest struggle.)

I don't know if you are experiencing some of the same heart problems I did, but I want you to know (and Jesus wants you to know) if you confess your sins, receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and ask for forgiveness, your sins are wiped clean! They do not exist in God's eyes any more. YOU are a child of God! Romans 8:15 states that "The Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship/daughtership. And by Him we cry out "Abba", Father.

You are adopted as sons and daughters which makes you heirs of the kingdom. He loves you that much! What I struggled with the most in giving my whole heart to Jesus and making room for Him is understanding that unforgiveness (of others and of myself) CANNOT keep residence in the heart and also allow Jesus to fully come in; there isn't enough room. If you struggle with forgiving yourself, God may call you to reconcile the sins of your past. And I can tell you, from experience, it may be the hardest thing you ever have to do. Reconciling a sin that you committed against someone is incredibly hard, especially when you know there could be consequences. But in the end, it will be the best thing for you to do and God will ultimately receive all the glory. It is amazing the complete release that comes with obedience in this area.

If you want Jesus to fill you to the measure with all the love He has for you, you have to remember that Jesus can't take full residence in your heart until you make room for Him. Pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal the areas in your heart that need to be cleansed and release that to God. Forgive yourself. Forgive others. Reconcile your sins and take Jesus in with your whole heart, with all your soul and with all your mind.


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