Romans 8:1-2

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

I often hear the voice of condemnation. Strong disapproval. In my mind. In my heart. In my life.

I was caught on a Tuesday. Caught deep , spun round in grace. Like an arm around my waist, caught close. Like a rain of warm water, welcomed. Washing down through my soul. Unmerited, rich, blessed love, life in God. When this verse lit up in my darkness like a flame of brilliant light. Always golden. Brilliant White.

On a Tuesday, mid-day, after a slow start morning. Slow and steady, moving forward. In which, I made special breakfast, like I had purposed to do, even though we were 30 minutes to an hour behind our normal schedule.

In which, on my counter, were arrayed a large amount of cooking dishes that had been gathering, as I struggled to catch up from a weekend when the men were all away. A weekend that came- after a week, dealing with illness and other urgent life matters that pressed my chest with stress and sleep eluded. And O, how frantic I sometimes feel, amidst the jumble of chores that encompasses my workaday life.

As I stood at the sink, in the afternoon, warm water running, sponge in hand. I was suddenly aware. Romans 8:1-2. There is now no condemnation. No condemnation. I am dealt with in love, in compassion, in mercy, in a greater understanding of my own self than I can ever possess of myself. In a recognition of my weakness, my smallness, the frailty of my flesh. Oh! How the love and life just circled me round.

You see, earlier that day, I had the happy joy of a visit from my Mom. Dear, beloved to me, and renowned for her kitchen cleanliness, work ethic, and duty. And I was struggling with a lot of guilt and condemnation. As I tried, discretely, to hide the stack of dishes awaiting me. (Truth Mom. But I know you saw them anyway. 🙂 ) As we moderately frantically tried to put laundry away. As I sighed relief that I managed and remembered to potty everyone and patch glasses, too.

So later, when I was standing at that sink,feeling relief that I was finally getting this dirty work, done.Often for me, I am not sure how certain things will manage… I just have to trust that they will. And they do and when they do, I feel surprised and relieved. And I was standing there, feeling for the first time, caught in that warm embrace, that I was loved and favored. Not strongly disapproved. Realizing deep down, free and clean, that my clean kitchen wasn’t my righteousness or lovableness, goodness, or favor. That dirty or clean, I am accepted and beloved. And I can lean into that favor. Lean into that grace that sets my soul free.There is a fragrance here. A pure, clean, lively fragrance blowing free.

Romans 8:10

But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness.

There is Life working in me.