Welcome

Much like your parents attic, treasured memories lay within. So, wipe the dust off my ruminations and remembrances, sit back and enjoy!
"Redeemed" (Big Daddy Weave)
Seems like all I could see was the struggle
Haunted by ghosts that lived in my past
Bound up in shackles of all my failures
Wondering how long is this gonna last
Then You look at this prisoner and say to me "son
Stop fighting a fight it's already been won"

I am redeemed, You set me free
So I'll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, now I'm not who I used to be
I am redeemed, I'm redeemed

All my life I have been called unworthy
Named by the voice of my shame and regret
But when I hear You whisper, "Child lift up your head"
I remember, oh God, You're not done with me yet

I am redeemed, You set me free
So I'll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, now I'm not who I used to be

Because I don't have to be the old man inside of me
'Cause his day is long dead and gone
Because I've got a new name, a new life, I'm not the same
And a hope that will carry me home

I am redeemed, You set me free
So I'll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, 'cause I'm not who I used to be

I am redeemed, You set me free
So I'll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, yeah, I'm not who I used to be
Oh, God, I'm not who I used to be
Jesus, I'm not who I used to be
'Cause I am redeemed
Thank God, redeemed

The Walk

The sounds of my shoes hitting the pavement echoed back at me as I walked the street in the dark. It had rained earlier and the road glistened with the reflection of the few street lights that actually worked and their reflections ran in long fingers lighting my way. The street was quiet, though I heard the sound of life in the distance...a car accelerating...a horn...someone laughing.  With no particular place to go, I just continued to walk the street until I came across a split in the buildings...an alley. I paused and tried to look down it, but there were no lights; the dark was thick and absolute...no varying shades of charcoal or grey, just...black. I heard a sound from the alley, but it was brief...a can maybe knocked over by a stray cat? I took a step towards the alley and glanced back to the reflected light which seemed to almost plead with me to follow. As I stood there, a warm...almost hot breeze emanated from the alley carrying with it an almost sweet...cloying scent that captured my attention. Glancing first left...then right, I strode into the darkness...

Sin. Its something all of us face EVERY day of our lives. It`s utter foolishness to think just because you`re a Christian that you`re immune Romans 3 tells us:

For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written:
None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God.
All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good,
not even one. Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.
The venom of asps is under their lips. Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.
Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery,
and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes.

And whether you`re a Christian or not, sin still carries a penalty...one look at our over-crowded prisons stands in testimony to that or the state of marriage or child abuse or neglect or any of a thousand things that plague our God dismissed society. And sin? It`s a choice...we live in a society that is teaching us...teaching our children that they don't need to take responsibility for the things they do. This is a flat out LIE. Something may overtake you like an addiction, but you took that first step...YOU made that initial choice. But God's grace and 'light' are still where we left them...waiting for you...for ME to come back and seek him,,,

John 3:19-20 - This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. "For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.

1 John 1:5-6 - This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

Psalms 82:5 - They do not know nor do they understand; They walk about in darkness; All the foundations of the earth are shaken.

John 12:35 - So Jesus said to them, "For a little while longer the Light is among you. Walk while you have the Light, so that darkness will not overtake you; he who walks in the darkness does not know where he goes.

2 Samuel 22:29 - For You are my lamp, O LORD; And the LORD illumines my darkness.

...Stumbling out from the alley I fell to the ground beaten, bloody...my breathing fast and shaken. The dark pulled at me as if with demanding hands...wanting me back. Panic rising in my throat, I reached out and touched the ground where one of the reflected fingers of light stretched out. And in the instant the darkness retreated...

~ Vince

Two Years and One Month

So many thoughts and so much time has past, I honestly don't know where to start so I'll just start right here...in this moment...

I opened my Bible today to Psalms 25 and when I got to versus 15 through 18 it stopped me in my tracks and it hit me hard in the chest:

My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare.
Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.
Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish.
Look on my affliction and my distress and take away all my sins.
 
Dear Heavenly Father, I pray these verses and ask that you release me from the snare of sin and destruction I have allowed myself to be caught in. My soul is crushed and my bones groan from the realization of my sin. Help me dear Lord and lift from me the troubles of my heart.
 
~Vince