The Promises of God…
Include All, Dear Donna.

July 7th at 6:35 AM
The Grace Of God Sure Is Somethin’

The Promises of God…
Include All, Dear Donna.

And that’s what I wanted to talk to you about. 
 When we were evangelicals, we knew something of the promises of God. We “knew” that God promised “eternal life” if only we did things… you know like lived a sin-free life, etc. 
 The only problem, and I know you know this… neither of us “felt” this “sin-free” life business was all it was cracked up to be. 
 Remember feeling guilty, and not know why you felt guilty? It was maddening wasn’t it? 
I think you felt a bit more guilty than I did… but we all did. That is… all of us “evangelicals”. I think guilt just comes with the territory of living in an evangelical world. It’s part of the game. 
 I know it’s been a while since we talked, so I thought I’d tell you of my adventures and travels in the years gone by. 
You see, I went down this road… a strange and wonderful road… filled with colors and sounds and smells and — shall we say it — filled with promises; the promises of God. 
 At first I couldn’t believe it all. But before long I started mapping out this road, so maybe, others can find their way down this road too. 
 That’s why I’m writing you this morning. 
 You see, as evangelicals we were sure that the promises of God applied to us… us, alone. 
 And we were sure they applied to us BECAUSE we were doing something to make it all happen. 
What were we doing? Ahhhh, we were being good. As best as we could 
 But the guilt remained. 
 We never did anything really bad. No one who looked at our lives would think anything except that we were good people. But the guilt remained. 
   And the guilt keep us from seeing and enjoying the promises of God. 
  I think I’m saying that this GUILT thing is the end result of our evangelical training. It’s not real. It’s not “biblical”. It’s just what comes out of that teaching and mindset we were spoon-fed since our youth. 
  In a nutshell, that “hell” doctrine was the 120 volt shocker. No one wants the threat of endless hell. And yet, that’s what  the evangelicals offer. And it’s really all they offer. Or at least the avoidance of hell. 
   Donna, let me ask you a question. How can you “love” God, when there is this endless hell threat laying there on the table??? 
  If you cooperate with God at all, that hell thing is somewhere in the back of your mind. 
 Maybe that was the source of our “guilt”. 
  Well, it’s been years now… and I can tell you of a surety, you never did nor ever could give God a bad hair day. 
 The evangelicals gave us a God that was little more than the mean girls at the school lunch room — judging people over nuthin’. 
  We were told that God is so there, so present, so intimate with our lives, and get this… so concern with every damn detail of our behavior… like a stalker. 
  He wasn’t concerned enough to be pleased with our “goo goo’s” or “gaa gaa’s” … No, God was like a damn TSA agent waving a wand all over our bodies, feeling our crotch and breasts, to make sure we’re OK. 
   So, in my travels… I discovered that God is everything… Oh my, how can I tell you… God is tenderly leading us along every step, is giving us every tear, is surrounding our very heartbeat. 
  Donna, the guilt was all false… but it was God’s design to bring you along. And it went on for years because God is terribly patient. 
   There is a strange verse in the Bible that says God is patient even with vessels of dishonor. And get this… it’s because He loves both the vessels of honor and dishonor 

 7:09 a.m. 
  Coffee refill time. 
 Hang on. 

Now if God is patient with the vessels of dishonor… (and the context of the verse clearly suggests that the vessels of dishonor were made and molded by the great God of heaven.) … why would we assume that the end of the vessel of dishonor was garbage dump of the universe?
No, God molded and made all. For a tender purpose. 
  I know you can’t go back and re-live your life. You know… like go back and relive it “guilt-free”. But nowadays, you can at least see that the guilt was a rather useless emotion. 
  I’m writing to share with you that the guilt was “of God”… as all things are of God. But the guilt was false, as it came to us from the twisted teachings of the evangelical and charismatic churches. 
 You see, Donna, God is not only in control of all things, God is intimately DOING all things. 
There is one glorious and strange bible verse that says… 
 So, even though you cannot relive your life… perhaps you can pass on the good word to your children, your family and your friends… that… “all is of God” 
    I think one of the big problems with evangelical teaching is that it had us all trying to justify ourselves. Whereas, it seems to me, and it seems to be revealed, in yet another “strange” bible verse, that it is God who justifies all creation. 
  I wanted to talk to you about the promises of God. And ya know… from our church going days… we hardly knew anything about the “promises of God”… all we were taught was the threats of God and the dealmaking of God. 
 God gives life to all… so, God has a responsibility to all. 
 God gives breath to all… so, God is our keeper. 
 God gives all to all… so, we are dependent on Him for our very understanding of His ways and His purpose. 

Alisha, are still here? 

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