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This Sunday – February 26

Freely.

A powerful word.

Life-changing really.

Too good to believe.

Especially when attached to the word justified.

Think for a moment how much energy you have spent this week trying to justify yourself in some way or another.

Not you? (Gotcha. To even think that thought is to attempt to justify yourself.)

Right now you might be anticipating some conversations where you will have to justify yourself. Your plans for the weekend. Your point of view in a work discussion. Why you feel the way you do about a certain situation.

Our drive to justify ourselves is so constant and normal that it is imperceptible. It’s the default. It goes into overdrive whenever we are threatened, in moments of conflict.

But it never works with God. Even if you try by being as spiritual a person as you can be.

If you think you can justify yourself, it makes you both prideful and judgmental towards the losers who can’t. Sure, a lot of church work and ministry is fueled by people trying to justify themselves.

You could actually justify yourself if everything in your life was a perfect match with what God had in mind for you, if every relationship, every thought and attitude, every action matched God’s glory.

To be justified is to be totally righteous – everything right.

This Sunday at the Gathering Church we will look at Romans 3:21-26, one of the clearest descriptions of what God has done in Jesus Christ to deal with our falling short of the life he intended.

And it says that he justified us freely.

Imagine the stress that would be shed from our lives if that truth got hold of us. Imagine the freedom to enjoy God and really love others if we didn’t have to prove ourselves all the time.

Let’s imagine it this Sunday.