Lately I’ve thought a lot about the theme of redemption.
Especially how God can redeem ridiculously bad situation.
It’s easy to say, and I hear myself saying it a lot. And usually believing it! But.. Just how?
How can He redeem the life of an alcoholic who is 6 bottles deep of some horrible, throat burning alcohol and reaching for a 7th?
How can He redeem the woman who sells herself every night to make enough money to survive? Or the one who is there against her will?
How can He redeem the kid who looks at porn night after night, thinking somehow that this is how life is supposed to look? Fed this lie by a broken culture.
How can He redeem the family who’s abusive husband/father comes home ready to fight every night?
How can He redeem all of this? How can He take this and make it new? Make into something beautiful? Something whole?
I don’t get it.
I don’t get how He can be in every situation. In every moment. Moments where the alcoholic goes for the next amber liquid, the kid for the next website. Any of them! And hundreds more situations just as horrible as the one before it.
As I type this I’m sitting on the roof of a cabin as rain starts slowly around me. The sound of a creek rushing somewhere nearby. It gives me the perfect ambient noise to think. He always gets me thinking near water.
I guess I don’t have to get it.
I don’t have to understand it. I don’t need to know how He does it.
Because He just DOES.
So many things have been redeemed through Christ. So many people made whole. So many times He has brought people back from the brink. And He’s just gonna keep doing it.
It doesn’t matter if I can have a grasp on what He’s doing, because I know He will.
He’ll redeem that situation. He’ll redeem that behavior. He’ll redeem that person.
He’ll redeem you.
We don’t have to sit and stew in our sin. We don’t have to weep thinking about how terrible we are or how we deserve what’s coming to us. We don’t have to be hopeless.
“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sin, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.” Ephesians 1:7-8 (NIV)
“I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end He will stand upon the Earth.” Job 19:25 (NIV)
According to my Bible, in ancient Israel a redeemer was family member who bought a slave’s freedom or who took care of a widow. Job was saying that his redeemer, the one that would set him free, was coming. He would redeem all of the horrible things that had happened in Job's life.
And therefore, He's gonna redeem yours. None of us, not a single one, are too far gone for God's free redemption. None of us are beyond His loving arms. "But I did (insert some personal sin that in your mind is the most horrible thing you could have ever done)..."
God's love is mysterious. In fact, it makes no sense whatsoever. But I guess that's why He's God. He has it covered. He knows what He's doing. That outta comfort you a bit. Comfort that you're Redeemer is right beside you.
I often pray peace and comfort over people. For God to come down and wrap them in His love and warmth. To me, you can never have enough of that. Whatever storms or trials or fiery things you’re facing, you can never have enough time sitting in the Father’s embrace. It’s always applicable. It’s always needed.
And what is more comforting than being set free? Being given our freedom at a price, a price that we don't have to pay? Being able to live the lives our Father wants for us?
What is more comforting than being redeemed?
Not much, I'd say.