No More Pain
Revelation 21:1-4 ESV
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
For those of you who have read my story, “I Married My Dad,” you know the suffering and abuse I have gone through in my life, but how God healed me, and how he gave me a new song to sing – a song of rejoicing in Him.
I wish I could say that my marriage situation has improved greatly, that my husband is completely free from his addiction, and that we are walking together with Christ, hand in hand, and that all things have been made new with us, as a couple. But, that is not where we are presently.
From my perspective, and I believe from God’s perspective, too, our marriage has been broken even before it began. Our marriage bed has always been defiled. The cheating and the lying and the abuse have never ceased, although we certainly have good days and bad days. We have peaceful days where, on a surface level, at least, all is well. But, the underlying truth of where our marriage is, and where my husband is in his healing process, has not changed. And, that is a very sad reality.
So, I mourn the loss of a marriage that could have been if only my husband had made Jesus Christ Lord of his life, and had he not made his lust addiction his idol, instead. I mourn over my husband and the choices he has made for his life, and what that has cost him and us, as a couple, but I still hold out hope that one day his chains will be gone, and he will be free in Christ and no longer chained to his addiction, and if I am still alive, that our marriage will be healed.
I often must cry out my pain and my suffering to God, trust him with my life and with my husband, and pray that I may respond to my husband with the grace and love of God, for I don’t always. I must fight against my flesh, too, so that I don’t become hard hearted or make myself numb to the whole situation, to where I stop caring, or to where I stop working on this marriage, and to where I just give up. For, God never gave up on me. I have to keep praying, keep hoping, and keep persevering. And, honestly, some days that is really hard to do, but God gives me the strength I need.
Many days, when things have been really bad between me and my husband, the Lord has encouraged me that He is my husband, and that He has betrothed me, and that comforts and encourages and strengthens my wounded heart. He encourages me, too, that He will never leave me or forsake me, and that He is completely faithful in all that He does, and that He will never lie to me or deceive me. And, so I rest in that comfort.
And, then he also encourages me that one day this will all be over and my pain and my suffering will be no more, and I will be forever with my Lord, and all my suffering will cease, and he will wipe away the tears from my eyes. Amen! I just hope and pray that my husband will be there with me, too. My greatest concern is that he will not be with me, because he has not yielded his heart and life over to Jesus Christ, but his lust addiction is still his god (his idol) which he bows down to, and which is the “Other Woman.”
All Things New
Revelation 21:5-8 ESV
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son. But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”
We don’t have to wait until Jesus Christ returns for us, his bride, for all things to be made new, though. We can’t always change our circumstances, and we certainly can’t change other people, but we can be changed within our own hearts, minds, and attitudes. That is why Jesus gave his life up for us on that cross, to make us new in him, so that the former things of our lives, those things of sin and self, would be done away with, so that we could be new creations in Christ Jesus, free from our addictions, and free to now walk in his righteousness and holiness.
Whether we are struggling or battling with addiction ourselves or whether we are the recipients of abuse because of other people’s addictions, Jesus died to set us free and to heal us. Even those who are the spouses of addicts must daily come to the cross of Christ to find healing, hope and deliverance, for Satan would love to use our spouses to destroy us, too, if we let him, and if we let our circumstances get the best of us, instead of daily yielding our own lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ died on that cross, not just so we can go to heaven when we die, and escape eternal punishment in hell. He came to give us New Lives in Christ Jesus, free from the control of sin, and free to walk in the holiness of God – all in the power and working of his Spirit now living within us. He is not only our Savior, but he is our Healer! Amen! He is our deliverer, too, for he died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his stripes (his wounds) we are healed! (See: 1 Pet. 2:24-25).
In other words, because of what Jesus did for us on that cross, through God-given faith in him – divinely persuaded as to God’s righteousness and holiness and of our need to yield to the Lordship of Christ in our lives – we can be free from our addictions and healed from the pain of unjust suffering, too. Amen! We can walk in freedom, in victory over sin and Satan, and we can be mighty conquerors through Christ Jesus who loves us. Amen!
But, if we choose our sinful addictions and our idolatry over our relationships with Almighty God, we will have none of that. If we choose to walk in unfaithfulness, sexual immorality, and idolatry, lying and cheating, murdering and hating, and abusing others for our own advantage, the Bible says we will not have eternal life with God, but a fearful expectation of judgment and of the fires of hell. And, choosing is not just a mental choice, for some people say they don’t choose addiction, but then their lifestyles say that they do. Choice is what we do, not just what we say, in other words.
The Holy City
Revelation 21:9-11, 22-27 ESV
Then came one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues and spoke to me, saying, “Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal…
And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. They will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
This is a wonderful promise for those who are walking in the light of God’s love, who are walking (living) according to the Spirit of God and no longer according to the flesh. For, if we walk according to the flesh, we will die in our sins, not live with Christ for eternity. And, if we make sin our practice, we do not have this hope of eternal life with God (See: Lu. 9:23-25; Jn. 6:35-66; Rom. 8:1-17; Eph. 4:17-24; Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Jn. 1:5-9).
This is not saying we will never sin, though (See: 1 Jn. 2:1-2), but it is saying that if we walk (live) in sin, and it is what we practice, that we don’t have the promise of eternal life with God. We need to take this seriously, for there are many professing Christians today who are living in sinful addiction who are claiming heaven as their eternal destiny, and they truly believe that what they do doesn’t affect their eternal salvation. But, they are wrong!
The Bible says that we reap what we sow. If we sow to please the sinful nature, from the flesh we will reap destruction. But, if we sow to please the Spirit, from the Spirit we will reap eternal life (Gal. 6:7-8). For, our salvation is not complete until Jesus Christ returns. So, just know that a mere confession or profession of Christ as Savior is not enough to get you into heaven when you leave this earth. Please know that if you live your life making your flesh your idol and you walk in sin and not in righteousness that these good promises here of eternal life with God are not yours to claim.
But, please also know that there is hope! You can be delivered from your addiction! Jesus died to set you free! Make him truly Lord of your life today, yield to his Lordship over your life, and in the power of the Spirit within you, daily put to death the deeds of the flesh and walk in the power of God’s Spirit now living within you. All things are possible with God, according to His perfect will for our lives, so trust Him with your life today and find your healing, your hope, and your freedom in him.
Power Of The Cross
Once in darkness now in light
Once blind now you see
Once condemned now reconciled
Broken now healed
That’s the power of the cross
See the chains fall
Friday, June 1, 2018, 3:30 a.m. – Thank you, Jesus, for these words of hope, healing, freedom, and victory over darkness, sin and self.