Monday, April 9, 2012

when the Easter lily doesn't bloom and the Soli Deo Gloria Party

It's time to pull up your chair.  Do you know you have one here in this space we call Soli Deo Gloria?  You do.  It's reserved every week only for you.  This place would be different if you weren't here and we miss you when you are gone.  This is a place filled with women who seek to honor your words, you heart, your tears, and your laughter.  Scooch in close.  You won't want to miss a word.

To read more about the Soli Deo Gloria community, please click here.
my lilies that have not yet bloomed
I stood in church on Easter Sunday, my hands lifted, my mouth responding in praise.  My feet tapped to the beat and I smiled wide at my children as they engaged in the grand party honoring Jesus rising from the dead.  I hear my littlest say, "Alleluia" and I hear in everyone's voice that same word reverberating.  It's good to say this again.

And yet, this nagging guilt over something tugged at my heart and I could feel it inhibiting my worship.  I would feel my heart swell and then quickly deflate as my thoughts turned the previous offense.  I heard the tape recorder in my mind saying:

He will not accept your praise.
You are not worthy.
How could you have done such a thing.

And then, I snap out of this trance of guilt-mired phrases and I hear clearly:

If you do not accept my forgiveness, what was the point of this day, of this death, of this miracle?

And I grasp hold of this Voice that speaks truth and I remember my humble plea for forgiveness, and I let the answer return to my heart -- the resounding Yes! You are forgiven, my child.  This is why I came to this earth, so that you might be free from condemnation.

I write this for those of you who may have had your joy stolen on Easter morning because of guilt from days past.  I write this for those of you who may be waiting for Easter to bloom inside of you.  I write this to say:

You are forgiven.
Jesus paid the price.
You can walk freely to Him and He will say, I love you.  Enough to die and rise again.
photo source
SDG Community Builder:  1)  In effort to make sure everyone feels loved here, will you please visit the 2 people ahead of you and leave a comment for them?  (If you are numero uno or dos, come back and visit the last person in the link up).  2) If you are new, type in "I'm New!" as your caption so that we might give you some extra linky love.  3)  See below for the finished shirts and let me know if you would like one.  I'm placing another shirt order on Wednesday.


  1. Well said, Jen! I have been feeling guilty because my joy was not there. I think it boils down to depression but it makes me feel guilty. I needed this to remind me that he died for me, knowing I would feel this way.

  2. i love the reality of this piece - joy comes hard for many....

  3. I love that you heard the voice of truth in the midst of your doubt. This is a great message because we do all struggle with that guilt!

  4. Jen- I can really relate to this "If you do not accept my forgiveness, what was the point of this day, of this death, of this miracle?" I struggle with drowning in guilt, but it is almost as if I then say His death and ressurection were not enough. Happy Easter friend!

  5. Such an honest, truthful post...however he came to forgive us all...and isn't that wonderful? Sometimes this is a hard concept to swallow, especially when we feel like we don't "deserve" it...I love your honesty in your posts, Jen! Thanks for sharing,

  6. great encouragement here...blessings~

  7. "this Voice that speaks truth"

    Yes. I want that Voice's "yes" to drown out my own "no". His trumps mine! Alleluia!

  8. Getting teens ready on a Sunday morning can create grace-losing moments. That little voice tries to come between me and my savior, to stop my worship - and that's what that little voice wants to do. I've caught on to that game! When I repent, nothing can come between me and my savior!

  9. Oh, Jen, this so captures His heart. I am thinking of the woman caught in adultery.... "Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more." He is so much more gracious than we are to ourselves.

  10. Here's to guilt-free Easter celebrations, and guilt-free living.

    As the old song goes: "Goodbye guilt, goodbye fear, good riddance. Hello Lord; Hello sun! I am one of the Easter people, my new life has begun."

  11. "The resounding yes" -- I love it! What the day is all about. Love this, Jen.

  12. Fantastic. If we don't accept forgiveness then why celebrate Easter? So good!


  13. How often we wallow in guilt when the blood of Jesus has covered the offense. He has forgotten but we can't. When I catch myself I always whisper Philippians 4:8--and think on the truth of Calvary. I love reading your writings. They always seem to take place right where I live.

  14. Oh, that deceiver and father of lies would love nothing more than to steal our joy in the freedom He granted on the day of resurrected life. And this is real, the dripping in guilt we feel. But you have said it well Jen, that He has paid the price for us, so we don't have to stay there. Thank you for this.

  15. I am so late. Late, late, late. Off to read. Can't wait for my Tshirt to arrive. Yesterday, the (in)courage shirt, and now my SDG shirt is on the way!

    ps my lilies look like yours, JF.

  16. Oh how I need to be reminded...listen to The Voice of Truth...walk in the light of His Resurrection! Amen.

  17. I loved this. "If you do not accept my forgiveness, then what was the point." What a great reminder, that I desperatley needed! Thank you! I hope you have a wonderful week. Thank you for hosting this community. It is such a blessing!

  18. Love the point you make about not accepting forgiveness. It's a real heart piercer!

    With me lately, it goes one step further: I have accepted His forgiveness, but struggle often and a lot with freely offering it again and again to others. I hear from Him in my prayers: "Kim, my forgiveness flows to you freely, with no strings, no 'I've got to get over what you did first.' You need to give it just as freely and lovingly."

  19. Oh, that nasty little voice. I have heard it often! So glad you listened to truth and had the courage to share it. Speaking it out not only helps others, it also solidifies the truth in your own heart! Bless you.

  20. Hi Jen - this weekend my joy was completely stolen but by the end of the weekend, I recognised the devil's hands in it all. So grateful for you lovely ladies in the bloggy world who help me to focus on the truth and not the lies.
    God bless precious friend

  21. Hi Jen, I just loved this post...a great reminder that we do not carry our guilt and shame, but Christ Jesus paid our price for it! Praise His Name!

    Jen, I really appreciate you visiting my son's Running Blog! I keep reminding him to update it, but he has been so busy at work and his wife finally came home from deployment, so I think he has been very busy~ He will soon get thought up I'm sure!

    Also Jen, my youngest daughter just started her own blog...

    Thank you for your sweet support and for your precious heart toward our LORD!!!
    In Sisterly Love,
    Cathy ♥♥♥

  22. Praise God that His mercies are new every morning! He has paid the price for our sins, we are forgiven, and it is finished!
    Love in Him,

  23. Sweet forgiveness! Like lemonade tea on a hot Texas day. Thank you for sharing your Easter testimony. Grace and peace to you in the risen Lord. Alleluia!

  24. so true we cling to guilt instead of rejoicing in the forgiveness. I love your honesty, Jen!

  25. So true...thank you for this reminder to not only walk in forgiveness of others but accept the forgiveness that's been given to me. I think most often that is the hardest of the two.

  26. The shirts look so good!

    We are an Easter people, and still, we are clay. So grateful for the way you let Him mold you, Jen.

  27. Amen! Our sermon on Sunday hit John 10:10 and I had a clear moment recently when doubts and lies were the thief coming to steal, kill and destroy and I asked the LORD for truth and He smashed the lie and reminded He gives life, only life, and that, so with you here sister:}


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