We love to make everything about us. The promises in the Bible that offer us love and grace and forgiveness are our favorites. Recently, just for fun, I went through Psalm 18 and circled every occurrence of I, me, my and mine. 24 in the first six verses alone!. My God, my rock, my salvation…They make us feel special. Graciously, God rocks our “me-centric” worlds with a bigger perspective.
It is one thing to say and believe that God is faithful to us – He most certainly is. It is a grander, more glorious reality to say that God is faithful to Himself…and thus, to us.
Our Faithfulness Is Fickle
I have just endured a dry season in my walk where intimate time with God was negligible. Being a feelings-oriented woman, I spent some time questioning Christ’s closeness. I knew He was near but I felt distance. When my focus is on my faithfulness (or lack thereof), I begin to believe that God must be far off – that I somehow shook him off in my wanderings.
“He is faithful to the promise he made to us when he sent Jesus to the cross…I will never leave you or forsake you.”
Embracing God’s faithfulness to himself frees us from the devastating effects of thinking we have anything to do with the way he sees us. God sees his children through the atoning blood of his Son, covering us for every act of treason and rebellion we have committed. He isn’t faithful to us because of anything we have done well or poorly. He wouldn’t be faithful to us if he was looking for us to uphold our end of the bargain.
He is faithful to the promise he made to us when he sent Jesus to the cross…I will never leave you or forsake you. He says to each of His children, “You are in me because of my Son’s sacrifice, sealed by my Spirit. I cannot deny myself and I will not determine my faithfulness on any merit of yours. You cannot make yourself worthy of my faithfulness to you. I choose to give it freely.”
We are not as big or powerful as we might choose to believe. God is faithful to himself because he took up residence in us when he rescued us. In keeping with his character as the covenant-keeping God, he does not deny us even when we deny him.
“We are relieved of the burden of grading ourselves on our performance.”
But, we are also being redeemed – transformed from the heart out, to be men and women of God. We may be thoroughly unfaithful but God in us is faithful to himself. We are drawn to increasing faithfulness because we are banking on his faithfulness. He will work out his promises in and through us, despite our best efforts and in spite of our worst.
What joyous, glorious freedom and peace come from this truth: God is faithful to himself. We are relieved of the burden of grading ourselves on our performance. We are compelled to enjoy the grace and power that comes as a result.