as I am

At this time of year we joke that children need to be nice or Santa will bring them coal for their stockings. We tell them that Santa is watching them and their presents will be in jeopardy if they misbehave.  All manner of empty promises and threats are made to children during the weeks leading up to Christmas. It’s enough to make me shake my head.

I wonder sometimes, if this is the same view people have of God. We have to “be good” or we will get coal in our stockings or worse. We decide we need to clean up our acts, stop smoking, swearing, lying, give more money away to charities, make our kids behave, whatever being good looks like. And we would be wrong.

God doesn’t tell us that we have to get cleaned up to come to Him. We just have to come to Him. That’s all. Scripture makes it clear, But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). No extra work to get on God’s good side, in fact, there is no way to get on God’s good side (Ephesians 2:8-9). Romans 3:23 says,  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. In other words you cannot earn a place by what you do. It has already been earned by Christ. We just have accept His gift of salvation, through His death and resurrection. That’s it. No gimmicks, no hidden agenda.

Dear Ones, we don’t need to be perfect, we don’t have make promises we can’t keep, we just need to come. Charlotte Elliott wrote the hymn “Just As I Am” in 1835, trying to explain the simple steps to salvation in Christ. It is in these words I find truth and comfort, that no matter what I have done, it is never so bad that God will not meet me where I am, Just as I am.

Just as I am – Thou wilt receive,
Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
Because Thy promise I believe,
-O Lamb of God, I come!

Just as I am – Thy love unknown
Has broken every barrier down;
Now to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
-O Lamb of God, I come!

Just as I am – of that free love
The breadth, length, depth, and height to prove,
Here for a season, then above,
-O Lamb of God, I come!

About gretchenr17

Wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend. Writer, farmer, fellow sojourner... at every turn I learn a bit more about God's wild mercies.
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