What’s the muddiest situation you’ve ever been in? For me, what comes to mind is back in my high school days, 4-wheeling with my boyfriend in the middle of nowhere after a rain storm––and getting stuck. The trek out ruined a very cute pair of shoes. Obviously I wasn’t anticipating the consequences.
Most of us are past the age of playing in the mud. But the truth is, we’re stuck in the mud puddles of life right now.
Where are you stuck? Fear? Disappointment? Busyness? Isolation? Shame of the past? Bitterness and unforgiveness? Unemployment? Empty relationships? Worry? Addictions? Depression? Our mud puddles of life, the places we get stuck, stem out of hopelessness. We’re afraid things won’t get better. We fear taking the wrong step and going deeper in the mud.
What’s ironic is that initially we’re often drawn to mud puddles. It’s kind of fun to dabble in the dirt, throw off inhibitions, and paint our faces like brave warrior princesses we secretly want to be. But then the mud starts to dry and we can’t get out. It’s uncomfortable and we’re stained. Others begin to shy away from our dirt. We believe we’re defined by our circumstances and aren’t seen as the person we truly are inside.
For anyone languishing in a mud puddle of life, here’s good news: You are NOT stuck. And you are NOT defined by any mud.
Christ can set you free! Christ washes away all shame, all guilt, all sin. No matter where you are or where you’ve been, you can be as pure as white snow. All of the dirt and mud are gone for good! How? It’s like baptism. When someone is dunked under the water and then comes up, this doesn’t save them or change their circumstances, but it signifies the death of their old life and the raising to new life in Christ. The same is true for us when we put our trust in Jesus. The past is just that: the past. It’s washed away. Our old, muddy self is dead. We’re not that person anymore even if our circumstances don’t change right away.
Most importantly, we’re set free to move forward and LIVE! Live a new life!
The prophet Nehemiah said, “Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10. Nehemiah knew thousands of years ago what is still true today: Real life can be hard and circumstances may or may not change. But circumstances do not define who we are. Bad choices and consequences of the past cannot keep us stuck in the dirty places of life if we make the choice now to trust in God and move forward with Him.
So girls, we’ve been wallowing in the mud long enough! It’s time for us to get up out of our puddles and walk forward together. And this trek isn’t just a hike out of the muddy wilderness. It’s a journey to living a new life! Our identity is in Christ! He is the royal robe adorning us. Can I just say, you look marvelous in those clean white threads!
“By our baptism, then, we were buried with Him and shared His death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from death by the glorious power of the Father, so also we might live a new life.” Romans 6:4 (GNT)
Let’s Talk: What is the muddiest situation you’ve ever been in?
May I pray?
Lord, we praise You that we are not defined by or stuck in the mud puddles of life. Whether we’ve dabbled in the dirt or have lived in mud huts our whole life, You can and will wash away all of the shame, guilt, regret and disappointment of the past. And then You clothe us in Your royal robe as You prepare us for our eternal inheritance at Your side. Jesus, give us the courage today to stand up, brush ourselves off, and take a step in a new direction with You. May we not only choose to leave the mud behind, but may the hope and joy of new life with You be the strength that keeps us moving forward. Amen.