I remember a time when I lay listening to my cd player one late evening. It was late that evening in the fall of 2008 when I had the typical high-school pressures. To understand the context, my faith at that time centered around being a ‘perfect Christian.’ But amidst the music industry was a new rave of a new Christian band that had just appeared on the scene. Among their songs was one that stuck out to me. I lay listening to that song that late at night. Its words had such powerful meanings. Such strong emotions. Such dire convictions. I pondered about each line. And after hearing the song, I had to look up who this new music band was. And I was surprised…
Where are the people that accuse me?
The ones who beat me down and bruise me.
Perhaps the worst version of ostracism is one we hold of ourselves. Unforgiveness. Self-hate. We abhor the past, yet feel as if it’s part of our present. Just know that the effectiveness of God’s forgiveness is not based on how we feel. You can feel hopeless, yet still have hope. You can feel your past sinful-self, yet already be a new creation in God’s eyes. You can feel guilty of previous sin, yet have your sin already covered by the blood of Christ. Just like in the days of Moses, Christ’s blood never washes away. The wind may blow and rain may fall, but it won’t just wash away. Through the wind and the rain, the blood will remain.
Sometimes it’s hard to keep going,
but faith is moving without knowing.
“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change… Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it.” The blame of suffering is not on God’s part, but humanity. Ever since Adam and Eve sinned, we have dealt with struggle. Pain. But the grace of God is to both repair the divide among us and remove suffering that sin has made. In fact, you’d be late to accuse God of not doing so. He already has — two thousand years ago. That’s what the cross was all about. It can safely be said: The eternal joy of heaven is worth every temporary struggle on this earth. And to our benefit, that hope will never fade away.
God, I want to dream again,
Take me where I’ve never been.
Perhaps among the most conflicting emotions for us in humanity are those of eagerness and fear. We desire a meaningful journey, yet fear the route that we must take. But it’s built within each of us: among the deepest desires of human nature is the need for purpose. Just as Hebrews 12 states, let’s throw away everything that causes hinderance. The disbelief within us. The sin that ensnares us. The fear that holds us back. Lean not on our own understanding, but trust on God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. In all our ways, may we acknowledge Him. And if we do, He will direct our path. Every step has a purpose. And with every one of those steps, God walks with us.
Dressed in black and white. Standing in an empty airplane hangar. They were far from the traditional Christian band. This new Christian band had made a powerful statement — with an unlikely and unexpected image. And after hearing the song lyrics, it all made sense. That wasn’t a defining moment in my life, but it was a start. I then began to question the image of a “perfect Christian.” In fact, this question has merged with the identity of the Millennial Spark — the idea that we don’t have to be perfect. So if you’re going through life’s trial, know that it’s okay to forgive yourself. We can safely rely on a heavenly future. And we can always summon the courage today to go wherever God directs us tomorrow. For it’s tomorrow that may be uncertain, but it’s the love of God that remains unbreakable.
“There is nothing more intimidating to Satan than a child of God who has seen the peace in a storm. They are unbreakable.”