By Anthony Easton/flickr: PinkMoose CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Freedom from Shame and Fear

The gift of Jesus is freedom, freely given.

Are you doing good works so that God will smile on you?

How’s that working out for you?

When I meet people motivated by this mentality, I ask them how it’s going. They invariably say, ”Ugh. I’m exhausted.” Yes, you are. The works mentality will exhaust you.

You will never be able to do enough to feel like you’re righteous!

Bottom line: a works mentality doesn’t work. It will burn you out.

Don’t weary yourself this way. Jesus died so that we would be made holy and righteous. That was His sacrifice for you. Let Him in.

The Bible says that the power of the cross is meaningless to those who don’t understand. So let’s understand. Why did Jesus sacrifice Himself?

He did it so that you, in your human flesh, wouldn’t have to make yourself righteous. He did it so you wouldn’t have to perform this impossible task. That was the concept. Jesus earned your place in heaven. He did it for you! He knew you could never do it for yourself. Jesus, the only man that walked the Earth with perfect thoughts, did it for you.

Now you never have to say, “God, look what I did to receive the Kingdom of Heaven.” You don’t have to work to exhaustion, failing yourself every day, being ashamed of who you are.

I know it’s hard to come to grips with that, but when you do, you will be transformed. You’ll be rejoicing! Jesus! You did that, man, you did that for us! You died to eliminate sin from our lives! Now we don’t have to be afraid of God!

And if that wasn’t enough, then you resurrected! You conquered death! Now we don’t have to fear it, either! No fear of God, no fear of death.

Jesus, thank you. You brought me into the Kingdom, to dine with the King. Every day there is a wedding feast because of all the new people coming in, and I get to go. Every day! I’m allowed at the banquet table no matter what I’ve done, because Jesus stood in for me, and by His death, made me holy and righteous.

The blood of Jesus has been poured over me. I confess that. Now God doesn’t see my sins. He doesn’t see my sins! He sees me! And He loves me.

We are all precious in His sight.

Jesus broke your bonds of sin and shame, fear and failure. Now you are welcomed and loved for who you are: His beloved and precious child.

That’s freedom!

I am the author of To Stir a Movement: Life, Justice, and Major League Baseball (2013), and my second book is in the works. Visit my Huffington Post page here. I blog here. Follow me on Instagram & Twitter: @JeremyAffeldt.

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