I could always tell Shannon & Ashley (the founders of The Bud Co) were on their way to do amazing things for the Kingdom. What God has done in and through their lives in the past few months has been so cool to witness, even from the other side of the screen and several states away.
With their second volume of Sew & Dew approaching, they asked for testimonies of God’s faithfulness. I wanted to help in any way that I could. I sat on their website, ready to type. God is faithful, I thought, this will be easy. I stared at the text box and watched my cursor blink. Blink. Blink.
For some reason the specifics of God’s faithfulness in my life drew a blank in my mind. Well that’s embarrassing, I thought.
I dedicated my life to follow Christ in seventh grade, pursued a calling to vocational ministry since junior year of high school, went to a Baptist university, and am currently in seminary in Dallas for Biblical Counseling. My personal resume seemed to be the poster child for someone who would have an answer to the question of God’s faithfulness.
But, for a moment, God’s faithfulness seemed to blur over my life. I couldn’t see it clearly. To be honest, I looked back into my life and simply saw my own mess. I had fallen into the trap of a smile on my face; a cookie-cutter, plastic, fake holiness.
You probably know what I am talking about. When we hold onto just enough of Christianity to stand but we don’t know God.
In these times, it’s easy to not give God credit for His work in our lives.
In these times, we become obsessed with our own shortcomings/times we’ve messed up/our own agenda.
In these times, we sin in “culturally-appropriate” ways so we barely notice.
In these times, we wrap ourselves around our own lives – we get protective around our own plans, our appearance, and our reputation.
It’s almost scary how the enemy can twist what was once meant for God into something that we want to glorify ourselves with. All of Ephesians 2 is just so rich with this. It’s so tempting to read a blog post and skip over reading the scripture imbedded in it (anyone else? Just me?), but check this out;
“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins in which you previously lived according to the ways of this world, according to the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit now working in the disobedient. We too all previously lived among them in our fleshly desires, carrying out the inclinations of our flesh and thoughts, and we were by nature children under wrath as the others were also. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of his great love that he had for us, made us alive with Christ even though we were dead in trespasses. You are saved by grace! He also raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavens in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might display the immeasurable riches of his grace through his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift— not from works, so that no one can boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for
good works, which God prepared ahead of time for us to do.”
“It is God’s gift – not from works, so that no one can boast.”
When we begin to truly understand grace, we lose the ability to cheer for ourselves, y’all. Nothing that we do gains salvation. Straight up nothing. All that we have to offer is the sin that made the death of Christ necessary. But we are still raised up to sit with Him.
How can we be so shallow to forget of His faithfulness?
What I have learned in this time of checking myself is that our God is not interested in complacency. He’s not interested in our ability to get through life while doing just enough to get
through the next day and call ourselves a Christian. He’s interested in change. He’s interested in growth. He’s interested in our lives being laid down, not at a slight angle until we’re only a little uncomfortable.
“As for the seed that fell among thorns, these are the ones who, when they have heard, go on their way and are choked with worries, riches, and pleasures of life, and produce no mature fruit. 15 But the seed in the good ground—these are the ones who, having heard the word with an honest and good heart, hold on to it and by enduring, produce fruit.”
“Therefore, let us leave the elementary teaching about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works, faith in God…”
He doesn’t want our compliance, he wants our change.
Let’s reflect on His faithfulness today, both throughout our lives and on the cross. And let it affect us deeply to an abundant life.
Allison Schmitz is a newly-wed, a Baylor University grad, and a current student at Dallas Theological Seminary. You'll most likely find her at Chick-fil-a or taking spontaneous weekend trips. Her hobbies include writing on her blog, going to all of the concerts, and being actually gluten-intolerant. Online, she runs her blog at allisoncschmitz.com and brings together community of young Christian women in Dallas/Fort Worth area at ayctinitiative.com.