“Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see” (Hebrews 11:1 NLT).
Our decision to no longer live our lives as a continual expression of our past, and to fully let go and trust God with our future, demands what the Bible refers to as faith.
On this journey, faith calls for us to accept some wonderful new realities on our adventure from brokenness to wholeness:
- We will trust Jesus with our entire life.
- We will not know what our future will look like.
- We will not reach our ultimate destination while on this earth.
- We will frequently feel as though we’re not in control.
- We will do many things we lack competence in doing.
- We will feel the pain of grief, loss, and disappointment.
- We will learn that being right might actually be wrong.
- We will realize that striving to be good is a disadvantage.
- We will have no one else to blame for our condition.
- We will become comfortable with being uncomfortable.
- We will realize no one can take this journey for us.
- We will experience true hope and wholeness.
- We will be deeply loved by Jesus.
- We will be completely forgiven by Jesus.
- We will be fully pleasing to Jesus.
- We will be totally acceptable to Jesus.
- We will be absolutely complete in Jesus.
- We will fully know and be fully known by Jesus.
Our Faith Is In Jesus Christ Alone
The object of true, authentic Christian faith is Jesus! No one else. Nothing else. When we place our faith and trust solely in Him, we are trusting that He fully knows us, unconditionally loves us, and that He can be trusted with every aspect of our lives. When we cultivate this type of faith in our relationship with Jesus, we find real, lasting rest, peace, joy, contentment, and hope that is not dependent upon our circumstances, our relationships, or ourselves.
Landmarks Along Our Path
It’s important that we take a minute to really consider the actual implementation of the hundreds of concepts, principles, and truths we have learned through the preceding postings. In summarizing the meaningful landmarks we’ve encountered along our path, these stand out the most to me.
- The power of paradox.
- Life is about being, not about doing.
- Identity dependence robs us of our true identity.
- Toxic shame is the absence of healthy shame in childhood.
- Shame and sin are passed down through the generations.
- Our adulthood is an equal and opposite story of our past.
- We contribute to our shame by staying in an endless cycle.
- Each of us is born with unique, God-given temperament needs.
- Soul work requires identifying and grieving losses of our past.
- Jesus is the good news for every form of human brokenness.
- We must turn from toxic people, places, and things.
- We must uncover lies and false beliefs from our past.
- We must rediscover our true identity in Christ.
- We must nurture lasting hope in others.
- God gives us the power to live our lives from the inside out!
- We each are God’s masterpiece!
Inside – Out
When I was a kid, I would get in trouble by my mom if I left my socks inside-out when I put them in the laundry basket. For some reason, it just seemed easier to leave them the way they were when I took them off.
The idea of something being inside-out carries with it the thought that something is backwards, not supposed to be that way. In a way, inside-out is a paradox – well, probably more of an oxymoron actually. How can something be both inside and out at the same time, right? Kind of like same difference – how can it be the same and different at the same time?
In 1989, probably less than a year after I was introduced to John Bradshaw and Melody Beattie’s writings, I met (at least through his book) another amazing author – Dr. Larry Crabb – whose book was entitled, Inside Out. Dr. Crabb was a very successful Christian counselor, Director of the Institute of Biblical Counseling, and Professor of Biblical Counseling at Colorado Christian University.
His writing had an effect on me similar to what John Bradshaw’s had just a year earlier. But this book was different. Bradshaw opened my eyes to the importance of soul work. Crabb introduced me to the concept of living the Christian life from the inside out. The coming together of these two was a beautiful collision.
If we could look at my personal journey with Christ from a 30,000-foot view, we would see a handful of impactful moments when God moved my soul and spirit to a higher place. Studying Inside Out was one of those times. In my next posting I will take a look inside the Inside-Out teaching of Dr. Larry Crabb.
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