by Margaret D. Mitchell
"Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O Lord." -Psalm 25:7
Rebellion is anything that does not line up with God’s word. Rebellion that we act out of is often rooted in pain—a hurtful event or past, where the plague of unresolved issues are allowed to operate in one’s heart and mind. Those issues do not just go away. They become a part of our reality. So what do we do? How do we process through them properly?
Whenever we are afflicted, we must be quick to forgive. Whenever we sin, we must be quick to repent. When issues settle into our heart, they will defile our heart; and we will speak and act accordingly, creating more sin upon sin. This is a death spiral.
Proverbs 4:23 states, “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” But what do we do when we are afflicted as children, growing up amid dysfunction? If we didn’t know Jesus at that time in our young lives, to whom did we turn? The good news is that Jesus desires for us to receive His restoration that He completed at the cross, and it’s not too late to begin. If you are willing to let Him lead you through a healing journey, He will see you through the process. He will give you revelation in His word to guide you, to comfort you, to restore you. He will lead you to sources and resources that can help you, such as a counselor or a friend.
James 3:16 tells us, "For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.” So what happens when we have carnal desires, unmet needs and ungodly thoughts, and we feel ourselves acting out upon them? We must ask God for His help. Confess every sin that you know to confess. Then ask the Holy Spirit (your Helper) to reveal the root of your hidden sins to you so that you can confess them. Otherwise, we can make the biggest mess of our lives that may affect not only ourselves but others.
Galatians 6:2 tells us, “Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” The enemy likes to hide issues and to deceive and shame women. He likes to cause women to feel alone in their sin. If you are carrying a heavy burden alone, ask the Holy Spirit to provide a safe person or safe group of people you can share your burden with, people who can walk through it with you. When you discern safety, ask others to pray for you.
Romans 8:1 tells us, "So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus." The Holy Spirit brings conviction, not condemnation. Condemnation is from the enemy. Whoever ministers to you should do so with love, and they should always point you to Jesus. If you have been behaving rebelliously for quite some time, God may be quick to reveal the root cause through others and will lead you to overcome it. He will give you an exit strategy. He is lovingly waiting for you to return to Him.
1 Samuel 15:23 tells us, “Rebellion is as sinful as witchcraft, and stubbornness as bad as worshiping idols. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He has rejected you as king.” God takes rebellion seriously. Knowingly or unknowingly coming against God and His word opens the door to destruction. I believe that God doesn’t send anyone to hell but that people send themselves by the choices they make. And the ungodly choices we make can also open the doors of hell in our lives on earth. 1 Peter 5:8 tells us, “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” Our only hope for peace and restoration is the power and love of God through Jesus to deliver us.
What root issues do you need to resolve? Are you willing to take hold of courage and step into the freedom that Jesus died to give us? Isaiah 42:16 says, "I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them."
Margaret D. Mitchell is the Founder of God's Love at Work, a marketplace outreach purposed to share God's greatest power source - the love of Christ. This devotional was adapted from Margaret's forthcoming book, Enduring Grace. All rights reserved.