For years I have worked to accept my life in its entirety. I’ve wanted to receive the good, the bad, and the ugly. It’s my story and the only one I will ever have. But I do believe that it’s not natural for us to embrace our story, no matter how terrific or terrible—we by nature are just a bit of a discontented bunch. We simply don’t accept the story God has given to us, nor appreciate walking it out before the world with all its foibles and blunders. This is mankind!
Accept, Accept, Accept the Life
This all said, I do know the incredible value of accepting our stories. In Martha Kilpatrick’s booklet The Great Lie, she says,
“God explained that ‘making peace’ means:
‘Accept, accept, accept the life I have given you. Desire no other life. When you receive the life I have given you, I will show you the life that I have given you.
‘Deep, deep submission in your own being to your own existence – your own brutal being – to the limits of who you are and the limitations of who you are not.’”
These are simply amazing words! And I have purposed to do exactly this. What I’ve learned is that it’s not such an easy work. Most of us blink out the parts or aspects of our lives we just don’t like, or at least do a bit of magic with some revisionist history. In my telling, I can describe the script in many ways. But to actually accept the raw truth of my story, in all its brutal honesty, is a courageous task indeed. We’ve been abused, mistreated, foolish, willful, and rebellious and if we’re honest, even stupid. It’s easier to receive only my peaks and ignore my valleys, but this is not being honest.
Accept the Life, a Work of the Heart
I’m not talking about a Jerry Springer show-style revealing to the world, but a personal work of acceptance in my heart. It’s a work of receiving God’s authoring to see His handiwork. And without my embrace of His story of me, I will not see the beauty of His masterful craftsmanship.
Did He not know that my circumstances would inevitably lead me to trek down certain paths? Of course! No, He didn’t cause me to sin, but He also didn’t prevent the alignment of situations that made it possible for me to stumble. Although He’s saved me from countless catastrophes, He didn’t eradicate every source of stumbling.
The Power to Accept the Life
What I’ve eventually come to in this work of acceptance is that only ONE has the power to accept the life He’s given me. Only Christ’s Life, His very Life, will ever say yes to the life He has given to me. The unsaved man has no ability to embrace his story. Acquiesce to it maybe but receive it…not so much. Only the born-again believer has the ability to make a YES transaction with the Father’s choices. Only the one who lives by the Life of the Son can accept the Life the Son has given. The Father’s choices are only embraced by His Son’s life. As I am in Christ, His Life becomes my acceptance of His own choices for me.
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Ephesians 2:10 NLT