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“For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering.  The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart—These, O God, you will not despise.” Psalm 51:16-17

Father, no words are adequate to thank you for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.  Thank you Lord that you have declared it has been paid in full.  No amount of work or service would ever be adequate to repay our debts.  Thank you that you do not require nor delight in burnt offerings.  Lord, I pray for those with the sin of abortion to come to you with a broken and contrite heart and to know the freedom you have paid for them to have.  I pray you would use Deeper Still to bring freedom to them.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

The aroma of coffee permeated the air as words bounced between friends.  I shared about Deeper Still and how the Lord is impacting lives through this ministry and how blessed I feel to be a part of this ministry.  This friend, with good intentions, asked me a question I’ve never been asked before.  She asked if I felt validated by this ministry and if being involved in this ministry was a way of turning what Satan meant for evil into good.

I must admit the question took me by surprise.

Good question.  The answer without hesitation is no.  Let me explain for anyone else who has ever wondered the same.  Yes, the Lord does work all things together for good and for that I am thankful. However, my motivation for ministry hopefully has nothing to do with me and everything to do with the Lord and His people.  It is my passion for others to receive healing and be free.  It is my calling and purpose.  Any other motivation would be self-serving.

In the Psalm above, David is writing after his sin of adultery with Bathsheba and murder of her husband.  David could have done much on his own to attempt to atone for these sins. However, service in response to sin often further hardens our heart and creates a distance between us and God. As we work to repay, we feel justified and pride creeps into inside crevices.  The only sacrifice pleasing to the Lord is a broken and contrite heart.  Only the life-giving mercy and grace now poured out in the atoning blood of Christ on the cross can justify, repay all debts and fully redeem and restore.  Self-atonement is death.  Jesus’ atonement is life.

Abortion is crippling.  The day I ended the life inside my womb is the greatest regret of my life.  If I could undo it, I would.  But no amount of serving or work could ever undo the deed or repay the debt owed.  There is only One who can and has and His name is Jesus.  To think I could ever repay is prideful.  What I do in ministry or writing or prayer would never be enough.  I’m thankful God doesn’t require me to strive to pay that debt.  No, He clearly states in His word, it is paid in full.

Motives are strong indicators.  As you read this today, I pray you would consider your motives as well.  Abortion has a way of seeping into our actions.  Good intentions and service are lined with bitterness if done out of self-serving, obligatory reasons, or as a way of atoning for sin.

My friend’s question was valid and it is one we all need to ask ourselves.  If the answer is yes in any way, we need to reevaluate our reasons for serving or self-sacrifice.

If you find yourself trying to “make up” for the sin of abortion with self-atonement, there is freedom for you.  Our retreats are free of charge.  Jesus has paved the way to freedom.  There is no reason to live in shame, guilt and recompense any longer.  Jesus came to set the captives free.  He longs for His daughters and sons to live in freedom with nothing hidden and no fear.  If we can’t be free, then what is this Christianity thing all about?  If it is up to us to atone for our wrongs, then what is the point of the cross?  Jesus didn’t come so we would continue to cower and live in fear of man, He came to set the captives free!  You don’t have to live in bondage from your past and live in fear.  There is freedom and it is for you.