I started coming to CPC in 2018, and last year I participated in “Deeper with Jesus”, a class taught by James Madsen. This class was an opportunity to learn about my humanness, how God understands us better than

I’ve come to the place where I have to be honest about the fact that my perceptions are often deceptive. What I see, what I hear, what I smell, what I touch, shouldn’t run contrary to the unchangeable truth we learned about the Gospel. Instead of going there in my head, I have to find a way to remember who God says I am. The beautiful, unchangeable truth about what God has done for us, always stays the same! It’s a stable platform, but I wander off of it all the time. No matter what, these truths can’t change that you are loved, you are treasured, God sees you, God sees us, and we are robed in the righteousness that Jesus gave us.

I had to accept, as difficult as it may be, that I’m a work in progress, and I really, always will be. I had fallen into a place where I thought that there was some kind of exclusivity to my sinfulness–and I had a worse version than everybody else. I don’t know how we get duped into that mindset, and I find myself tripping over it still, to be honest with you. “Deeper with Jesus” helped me learn that there is no exclusivity to my adversities, sinfulness, or the pain that those challenges have caused because every human being has their own version of this. Understanding that was freeing to me, and in spite of my brokenness, my true identity is as God’s beloved child.

There are a few practical ways I have applied what I have learned in the class. I’m really diligent about starting my day with prayer because the world wants to pull me into the busyness of the day. I cast aside all the formalities of praying. Living alone in a condo, I speak my prayers out loud and find it therapeutic to process with God. The class relayed to us that it’s like sitting down and talking with a wise father about stuff in life. And, of course, when I face difficulties throughout my day, I ask God for help. I’m fighting my propensity to see it as me against the adversity. I am learning to see it as God with me against the adversity because if it’s just me, I’m always going to come up short. God has unlimited resources and when I think of it in that context, it allows me to ask Him “God, please come and sit with me and help me through this.” That really makes a difference in my life.

I have made an effort to be more conscientious about gratitude, making sure to thank God for each of the little blessings that He sprinkles along the pathway through each day. It’s very subtle, but you need to have the eyes to see.