the paradox of God using righteous sinners


As I drove home from work, I cried out to God in utter confusion. I asked “why me?” and “what is going on here?” You might assume that my life was falling apart, but in fact, the opposite was happening. In a single day I had discovered that my book was a finalist for an award and I had been asked to write an article for a internationally-known ministry. As well, after years of feeling like a child in ministry, I was feeling new respect coming from the leadership of my church. Frankly, everything seemed to be going right.

But I felt underserving. I wasn’t holy enough to be this person God seemed intent on using. I didn’t spend enough time in Scripture or praying, my attitude stank at times, and I still struggled to keep my temper with my boys. There was no reason God should choose me.

Then I had a conversation with a friend, a conversation I expected to be all about her and the crisis in her life. Instead, she spent an hour speaking God’s truth into my own life.

“Know that the LORD has set apart the godly for himself.” Psalm 4:3

The words from God spoken by my friend poured over my cracked and confused heart, flowing into each crack and smoothing it with his truth. He has chosen me.  And frankly,  if he chooses me, he also wants to choose you. You and I may not feel godly and in truth, we are all sinners. But the great conundrum of Christianity is that we are justified and godly and still ungodly sinners in need of grace. Christ stands in between us and the Father, so when the Father sees me, it is through the veil of Christ’s perfection. They see his light, not my darkness.

“Many are asking, “who can show us any good?”
Let the light of your face shine upon us, O Lord.” (Psalm 4:6)

Many in the world are longing to see goodness, and as he shines the light of his face on us, we are able to reflect that light out to a dark and hurting world. One day as I was participating in a prayer time for a hurting woman, she looked at me and said that I was shining.

May the light of God’s face always shine upon me, so that I might in turn reflect it out to others. Because it’s not about me, it’s about HIM. He sets me apart for his glory, not for mine.


Has God anointed or chose you to do something that feels way beyond your capacity? Please share!

Photo credit: dimitri_c

One response to “the paradox of God using righteous sinners

  1. I too am amazed that He would ever want to be associated with such a sinner (me!) I am constantly failing and forgetting. I know the truth yet act as though I do not at times. My heart is willing but my body rebels. I love how you say that we are seen through the veil of Christ’s perfextion….what a beautiful picture! Thank you Christie!


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