Thursday, October 18, 2012

How far IS the East from the West, Lord?

Since my blog friend Lisa from Christians under Construction was following along with our quest to overcome feelings of guilt, I invited her to write a guest post of the things God is teaching her about it.  Her message is healing and liberating, and I'm thankful that she was willing to contribute.
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I was so glad Tammie asked me to participate with you all by writing a guest post on what the Lord has shown me in my battle with guilt. This series 31 Days from Guilt to Grace was perfect timing for me personally; Guilt has been a huge area of emotional pain in my life! Although it has significantly changed over this last while I am ready to deal with this issue of lingering guilt once and for all, thank you Tammie.

 I have so much to say on this issue as I tease it out, inspired by my sweet friend, Tammie. So, I am going to be noting some things over on my own blog over the next while. Instead of going over Tammie’s foundational work here on guilt and the same scripture and so on, I am sticking to one point that builds on what she has shared and hopefully adds a little too it.

This scripture is the basis for my post today, it is one we have heard so many times and I know myself that it is one of those scriptures I used to rhyme off and hear a lot but never stop and think “what does that actually mean?” 

 as far as the east is from the west,
    so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

To be honest until I really thought about this I thought that was just a nice saying “As far as the east is from the west”... it had no relevance for me. Then, after I allowed my mind to see it as a reality to be understood and not just a pretty expressive saying, I first imagined my arms outstretched as a measure of the distance and to be honest (I am small) it’s not that far is it? So, I pooh-poohed that length of my own short arms example and thought a little bigger... Open a map and go Asia to America.... but that still was finite in my mind, I could still go and retrieve my sins that way lol, it might be a trek but it was doable to a human! Do you ever think this way? 

This scripture reference – so often quoted – began to get under my skin, but in a quiet annoyance type of way. I just did not see how amazingly supernatural this was! How could I ever see the end of my guilt when, I truly repent of my sin and then God just throws it over my shoulder to Asia where I could retrieve it should I really want too... or I would at least know it was not GONE even if I didn’t actually go retrieve it-it was just over there, not too far away!! I thought it was finite! It only takes 3 or 4 hours to get from the East (where I live) to West of Ireland!  [Disclaimer: I did not think God was actually sending all my sins to Asia!]

If I am the only one who thinks backwards like this and has had trouble understanding this practically, I am sorry... and I hope you don’t mind amusing me while I continue? ;)

How far IS the East from the West, Lord?

Have you heard the Casting Crowns song East to West? Let me link it here and post a link to the lyrics below, would you listen to the song and ponder the lyrics with me now? And then we will pick up with my concluding points.


If you have struggled with guilt, especially false guilt, then you understand “But today I feel like I'm just one mistake away from You leaving me this way” 

The song beautifully puts the distance from east to west represented in the incomparable sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for us ... “From one scarred hand to the other”

Jesus paid with His life blood and His broken body for us to be able to hand Him the burden of this worlds system and this original sin carrying flesh we are wearing! When we exchange Our Guilt for His Grace in true repentance, we can be free! We don’t need to carry the guilt of what He has taken from us (in fact taking guilt back and holding it falsely must be like spitting in our Saviours face! If you paid a fine for me and I was set free but stayed in prison despite you that would insult you, wouldn’t it?). He helps us by His Grace, to live each day! Repent and give Him the original burden of sin – take his yolk, then try our best daily with His help and keep a short account! It’s so simple but we complicate it! 

Give it to Him, then.....LET.IT.GO!!!!

Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV)

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Praise the Lord for this awesome exchange!

So, do you want to know how far, east actually is from the west? I can show you 

I believe the Lord made it very clear for me and I am a visual learner so this exercise will help me to remember in my walk away from carrying unnecessary guilt and into understanding Grace! I pray this visual will help you also and that it blesses you greatly! 

John 8:36 (NIV)

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

1 comment:

lisa croker said...

Thank you Tammie! I am so glad to be a part of this month!

This is not something I live with ease yet... it is very much a struggle. Thankfully, we are not alone! not only do we have Gods Spirit, but we have each other, all on the same or similar journeys with this! Shared experience is great.

Thank you! x