Jesus Invites Us To Come Just As We Are

Do you ever feel useless? Perhaps you’re limited physically or emotionally and can’t do what your heart really wants to do? Maybe you see others so busy helping others, but you have no energy to get out there yourself?

Charlotte Elliott knew what that felt like. Her carefree life began in 1789 but drastically changed in her early thirties when a severe illness devastated her life. She spent the next 50 years of her life as an invalid in terrible pain, weakness, and exhaustion.

She began to blame God for making her a prisoner. Depression cast a deep darkness on her soul. Her anger turned to bitterness.

One day a Swiss evangelist came to see her. He talked of peace and joy and read God’s Word to her. She lashed out at him and God, and he told her she had become bitter and resentful. God convicted her, and she confessed that she didn’t know how to come to Christ. He counseled her, “You have nothing of merit to bring to God. You must come just as you are.”

That day became a turning point in her life as she grasped onto Jesus as her Savior. God didn’t take her affliction away, but she knew she had the Anchor of Hope to hold onto, and that He would give her sufficient grace.

Still, she sometimes struggled and became depressed. She felt so useless, especially when she saw those around her always busy with some service for God.

The night before a charity bazaar her family prepared for, she couldn’t sleep because of deep distress. Doubts ravaged her spirit. Had God rejected her?

The day of the bazaar, she was alone at home, confined by her sickness. All the distressing thoughts of the night hit her again. She knew they could only be conquered by the grace of God. As she gathered up the promises of God in her soul, she recalled the words from her spiritual mentor to come to Christ just as we are.

She then, at the age of 45, penned the words of a much-loved hymn – “Just As I Am.” Later on, it was published and has been a comfort to many souls of God’s unconditional love for close to two centuries.

A woman who felt useless was used by God for far more people that she ever knew. Still today, her words spread hope to the hopeless that God wants us to come to Him just as we are, resting only on the blood of Jesus that He shed for us.

Do you see Jesus’ arms of love stretched out inviting us to “Come!” No matter how useless we feel. No matter how hopeless we feel. No matter how rejected we feel. He desires to wrap us in His arms of bottomless, unconditional love and free grace. It’s not about what we do for Him. It’s about what He has done for us.

“For it is by grace you have been saved,
through faith — and this is not from yourselves,
it is the gift of God — not by works,
so that no one can boast.”
Ephesians 2:8-9

“Just as I am – without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bidst me come to Thee,
– O Lamb of God, I come!
Just as I am – and waiting not
To rid my soul of one dark blot,
To Thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,
– O Lamb of God, I come!
Just as I am – though toss’d about
With many a conflict, many a doubt,
Fightings and fears within, without,
– O Lamb of God, I come!
Just as I am – poor, wretched, blind;
Sight, riches, healing of the mind,
Yea, all I need, in Thee to find,
– O Lamb of God, I come!
Just as I am – Thou wilt receive,
Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
Because Thy promise I believe,
– O Lamb of God, I come!
Just as I am – Thy love unknown
Has broken every barrier down;
Now to be Thine, yea, Thine alone,
– O Lamb of God, I come!
Just as I am – of that free love
The breadth, length, depth, and height to prove,
Here for a season, then above,
– O Lamb of God, I come!”

ABCs of Jesus’ Love

love when God gave Jesus

There is no greater love than the love of Jesus.

Thanks to an online friend, Susie, who posted ABC Adoration, I was inspired to return to something I started quite some time ago. I hope your soul will be refreshed as mine was as I focused on the endless depth of Jesus’ love for us. As I worked on it, my drooping spirit lifted and my storm-tossed emotions quieted.

Please feel free to share in the comments another adjective to describe Jesus’ love and a Bible verse to go with it. There is no end to the ways He loves!

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A

Active Love
“For from of old no one has heard nor perceived by the ear,
nor has the eye seen a God besides You,
Who works and shows Himself active on behalf
of him who [earnestly] waits for Him.”
Isaiah 64:4 AMP

B

Boundless Love
“So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through your faith.
And may you, having been [deeply] rooted and
[securely] grounded in love, be fully capable
of comprehending with all the saints (God’s people)
the width and length and height and depth of His love
[fully experiencing that amazing, endless love].”
Ephesians 3:18 AMP

C

Compassionate Love
“Don’t tear your clothing in your grief,
but tear your hearts instead.
Return to the Lord your God,
for He is merciful and compassionate,
slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
He is eager to relent and not punish.”
Joel 2:13 NLT

D

Divine Love
“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory
and the exact representation of His being,
sustaining all things by His powerful word.
After He had provided purification for sins,
He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.”
Hebrews 1:3 NIV

E

Empowering Love
“The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead,
lives in you. And just as God raised Christ Jesus
from the dead, He will give life to your mortal bodies
by this same Spirit living within you.”
Romans 8:11 NLT

F

Faithful Love
“Be strong and courageous.
Do not be afraid or terrified because of them,
for the Lord your God goes with you;
He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV

G

Grace-filled Love
“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father,
who has loved us and given us everlasting comfort and encouragement
and the good [well-founded] hope [of salvation] by His grace…”
2 Thessalonians 2:16 AMP

H

Healing Love
“He heals the brokenhearted
And binds up their wounds
[healing their pain and comforting their sorrow].”
Psalm 147:3 AMP

I

Inviting Love
“Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28 NIV

J

Justifying Love
“And such were some of you [before you believed].
But you were washed [by the atoning sacrifice of Christ],
you were sanctified [set apart for God, and made holy],
you were justified [declared free of guilt] in the name
of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the [Holy] Spirit of our God
[the source of the believer’s new life and changed behavior].”
1 Corinthians 6:11 AMP

K

Keepsake Love
“No one has greater love [nor stronger commitment]
than to lay down his own life for his friends.”
John 15:13 AMP

L

Liberating Love
“So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.”
John 8:36 NLT

M

Merciful Love
“But God is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much,
that even though we were dead because of our sins,
He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead.
(It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)”
Ephesians 2:4-5 NLT

N

NO Condemnation Love
“Therefore there is now no condemnation
[no guilty verdict, no punishment]
for those who are in Christ Jesus
[who believe in Him as personal Lord and Savior].”
Romans 8:1 AMP

O

Omniscient Love
“You know when I sit down and when I rise up
[my entire life, everything I do];
You understand my thought from afar.”
Psalm 139:2 AMP

P

Protecting Love
“The eternal God is your refuge,
and His everlasting arms are under you.
He drives out the enemy before you;
He cries out, ‘Destroy them!’”
Deut. 33:27 NLT

Q

Quieting love
“The Lord your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness;
He will quiet you by His love;
He will exult over you with loud singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17 ESV

R

Rescuing Love
“He led me to a place of safety;
He rescued me because He delights in me.”
2 Samuel 22:20 NLT

S

Sacrificial Love
“This is real love — not that we loved God,
but that He loved us and sent His Son
as a sacrifice to take away our sins.”
I John 4:10 NLT

T

Tenacious Love
“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us
from God’s love. Neither death nor life,
neither angels nor demons, neither our fears
for today nor our worries about tomorrow
– not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.
No power in the sky above or in the earth below
– indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us
from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:38-39 NLT

U

Unconditional Love
“But—
When God our Savior revealed His kindness and love,
He saved us, not because of the righteous things
we had done, but because of His mercy.
He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth
and new life through the Holy Spirit.”
Titus 3:4-5 NLT

V

Victorious Love
“The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.
The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.”
Romans 16:20 NIV

W

Willing Love
“No one can take My life from Me.
I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have
the authority to lay it down when I want to
and also to take it up again.
For this is what My Father has commanded.”
John 10:18 NLT

eXemplary Love
“Beloved, if God so loved us [in this incredible way],
we also ought to love one another.”
1 John 4:11 AMP

Y

Yearning Love
“Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you;
therefore He will rise up to show you compassion.
For the Lord is a God of justice.
Blessed are all who wait for Him!”
Isaiah 30:18 NIV

Z

Zealous Love
“For God so [greatly] loved and dearly prized the world,
that He [even] gave His [One and] only begotten Son,
so that whoever believes and trusts in Him [as Savior]
shall not perish, but have eternal life.”
John 3:16 AMP

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“Jesus Loves Me”
by Chris Tomlin

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Linking up with: 

Holley – Coffee For Your Heart 

Jennifer – Tell His Story 

Kelly – Cheerleaders of Faith

Barbie – Weekend Whispers

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Reflecting Jesus and His Love

reflection
(Photo taken by my son Glen)

Andy loved to talk about Jesus and asked tons of questions about Him, probably more than most children do. Then at 5 years old he was stricken with encephalitis and was disabled for life. He couldn’t walk, talk, or hear, but his parents could still sometimes understand him through his eyes or motions. Whenever he saw a picture of Jesus or was taken to church, his countenance brightened. “Jesus” was a name he could write other than his parents’ names. His favorite cap read “Jesus Is My Boss.”

I have never met Andy, but my sister knew him and recently went to his funeral. He was 43. Throughout his life he had breathing problems and endured lots of surgeries. After one particular surgery, his mom stood on edge as she waited for him to breathe on his own again. He did breathe again, and his mom turned to the window and cried. She prayed, “O God, I can’t take this anymore.” When she turned back around, Andy held his hands up and formed a cross. She said, “Yes, Andy, I know you are telling me Jesus is with us.”

The day I first heard of Andy, I was unable to do much and was beating myself up for not getting much done. I was so impacted by his story. Here was a man with all these disabilities and yet he still shined for Jesus.

He had a relationship with Jesus, and that’s what counts. If we are close to Jesus, no matter what situation we are in life, we will naturally impact others around us. Many people could see there was something in his countenance that was different. I think he probably had a deeper relationship with Jesus than many.

Too often I worry I’m not “doing” enough with just writing these posts and trying to encourage others. I get caught up in the insecure, condemning voices Satan just loves to throw at me. Or I compare myself to others who can write a post every day and yet always have something new to write. Those who always have the right words to say in comments. And that sign pops up in my brain again – “Not enough!” I too easily forget to “just be” who God intended me to be in whichever situation He plants me with whatever He gives me.

I also get it all wrong when I think how much I “do” for others will determine how much God will love me. But I have it all mixed up. His love is unconditional. His grace is free. Not one good thing we do is going to buy us more of it. It’s already there in full measure for us to receive with an open heart. All we have to “do” is believe in Jesus who loves us so much that He has bought grace for us with His own blood.

“For it is by grace you have been saved,
through faith—and this is not from yourselves,
it is the gift of God—
not by works, so that no one can boast.”
Ephesians 2:8-9

Jesus wants us to have a personal relationship. To rest in His grace. To listen to where He leads us. Without Him we are empty vessels. Without His living waters, we cannot pour out His love to others.

If all my energy is directed to wanting to be more like others or trying to gain approval of others, what energy do I have left for nurturing my relationship with Jesus? If I let others, including Satan and myself, affect my thoughts and actions, I separate myself from nourishment in Christ Jesus. If I don’t plant myself next to the Living Waters, I will bear no fruit and will wither away.

“But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And on His law [His precepts and teachings]
he [habitually] meditates day and night.
And he will be like a tree firmly planted
[and fed] by streams of water,
Which yields its fruit in its season;
Its leaf does not wither;
And in whatever he does, he prospers
[and comes to maturity].”
Psalm 1:2-3 AMP

 Andy was not busy “doing.” He was “being” who God wanted him to be. He was planted in Jesus, so he naturally reflected Jesus and His love. That’s what we need. It’s not about doing, it’s about being who we are in Christ and letting His love shine in us, spilling out towards others.

“As all of us reflect the glory
of the Lord with unveiled faces,
we are becoming more like Him with
ever-increasing glory by the Lord’s Spirit.”
2 Corinthians 3:18

A Child's Trust

“Do They See Jesus In Me?”
by Joy Williams
“Do they see Jesus in me
Do they recognize Your face
Do I communicate Your love
And Your grace
Do I reflect who You are
In the way I choose to be
Do they see Jesus, Jesus in me?”

Dearest Lord Jesus, please help us
to deepen our relationship with You.
Please make us shining lights for You.

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Linking up with: 

Holley – Coffee For Your Heart 

Jennifer – Tell His Story 

Kelly – Cheerleaders of Faith

Barbie – Weekend Whispers