Joel 2:1-2, Psalm 51:1-17
I find that the Old Testament is full of contradictions. First we are told to fear the Lord, then we are told that if we turn to the Lord, we will only receive blessings. I think that currently, as we are experiencing a darker time, we sometimes feel lost. But we must trust in our relationship with the Lord. We must pray and trust that God hears us and holds us. Give God glory and praise, and you will receive his blessings.
In my Methodist upbringing, I was taught that grace is available to anyone. If you make a mistake or do something wrong, that does not mean you are not worthy of God's love. You repent and pray for forgiveness and by the grace of God you are forgiven and loved by God. We all have made mistakes in the past and where would we be if not for grace?
We must wear our faith like a mantle for the world to see. Live your life, as best as you can, the way God wants. Be kind, show mercy, treat your neighbor as yourself and engage in justice for all. This is faith, hope and love in action!
In Psalm 51, we are told we are born with sin. But the good news is that if we turn to God and accept help, we can transcend ourselves and be filled with the Holy Spirit. I believe this with my whole heart.
Your job is to share this good news with everyone. Praise the Lord! You can trust that you will be made new so that you can spread the news that God is good.
Create in me a clean heart, oh God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit. These words speak to me and give me peace. May they also bring peace to you.
Julie Adams is the spiritual growth coordinator for the Minnesota Conference.