6.23.2011

I believe.

I know I talk about my faith a lot on this blog, some may like that a lot, others stop reading my blog because of it. I've struggled at times with how much I should write about it, but I think I've found a healthy balance that works for me.

I really enjoy posting pretty things I find, photos I've taken, projects/crafts I've created, etc. but all of that will eventually pass away, and is definitely not something I base my life and soul upon. I feel that to neglect to talk about my faith and how much Jesus means to me is hypocritical, ignoring the very thing that keeps me alive, and drives me.

Many may skip over this because they don't agree with me, or maybe because they completely do, and already know most of what I'm going to say, which is OK, I just wanted to have a straightforward and clear post on everything I believe that I will not compromise on and what I base my entire life on (as a result, it is word-heavy, but it's worth it).

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I know that I cannot do enough 'good' to get into heaven on my own, because no matter how hard I try, I will fail. I will think an evil thought, say something selfish, hurt someone's feelings, be dishonest, turn my back on a friend, or something else. No matter how 'good' I might seem, I will never ever be able to be perfect. I break God's commands every day, whether in a big way, or a little way. Most of us don't murder, steal, or commit adultery on a regular basis. But we do dislike people, maybe even hate them. We do lust after others, think impure thoughts, and are jealous of others' possessions. We hurt others to get ahead in life. All of these are sins too. As a result, we do not deserve to ever be in God's presence, or go to heaven. I deserve to die and go to hell, because of my sins (even though some might seem "small" to this world). I am not holy and God cannot have anything unholy in His presence.  If he gave an 'exception' he would compromise His very nature.

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. 
Romans 3:23

That is when Jesus comes in. Because God loved me so much, He didn't want me (or you), to be separated from Him, so He made a way for me to be saved from my selfish self. I believe Jesus is God's son, sent to walk on this earth and die for my sins on the cross. He endured the most painful humiliation and death, while containing the power to end it all, and leave us condemned. How grateful am I that He did not. His love overpowered sin, and presented us with the gift of eternal life. There is no earning or deserving this gift, I can't do that, you can't. It's simply to be received.

for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions and crushed for our iniquities, the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth ... For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. Isaiah 53

I decided I wanted this gift of eternal life and relationship with my Creator and Savior when I was 11 (read this post of poetry on that day). I asked Him to forgive me for the sins I had done, and told Him I wanted Him to be in control of my life now. On that day I gained the reason for living. What is life worth if not to glorify God? That is why we are here.

 for it is by grace you have been saved, this is not of yourselves, it is a gift of God. Ephesians 2:8

Since then I've had ups and downs in my relationship with God. Some times I've been really close with Him, spending a lot of time in prayer and loving His word, other times I've fallen farther away, and there were a few years I let sin creep in and take control over a big part of my life. That was a really painful time, and there is much I regret and things wish I could take back, but I learned so much of how faithful God is through that. Even when I turned my back on Him and chose to live in an unholy and impure way, He never left me, never turned His back on me, He waited for me to return to Him.

But you O Lord are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. Psalm 86:11
Teach me your way O Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, so I may fear your name. Psalm 86:2

I've learned how much more joy and true life comes through living with Jesus as the focus of my life. Through Him there can be joy in the painful days, hope in the bleakness, peace when the circumstances bring worry. He never changes, and His love for me never changes, even when my circumstances do.

I fail so much, but all I want to do is grow closer to Him and learn to love Him with more and more of all that I am. Everything else is a loss compared to that. Everything.

But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes form the law, but that which is through faith in Christ- the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith, I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain the resurrection from the dead.
Philippians 3:7-11 


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If any of you have more personal comments or questions you'd like to discuss about the nature of this post feel free (really!) to email me : danaemoran@gmail.com

2 comments:

  1. Danae ~ I found your blog from my friend, Kim Arnold, who fancied-up Savannah's wedding dress. She sent the link to your blog so I could see the lovely photos of Savannah on her wedding day. Kim added the knotted bows in the back and added more layers, I believe. Meanwhile I have bookmarked your blog. It is a blog of substance. Mine is too. (macmurchy.blogspot.com) By substantive, I mean that every post filters through your bedrock faith. Your thoughts and photos are intentional; not random. Well done. Your love of the dear Lord Jesus encourages my heart.

    Of all the coincidences, my precious daughter, Joy Navratil, lives in Fargo and was a sociology major at MSUM as well. She graduated in 2008. She and her husband frequent Nichole's and when I go up, it is our favorite place to ride bike. They are often there on Sat mornings. Nathaniel has red hair, hard to miss. As I peruse your blog, I keep thinking what good friends you and Joy would be. They attend the church that meets in the NDSU arena. Not sure what the name is.

    You are Shannon's cousin? Ryan was in my husband's youth group back in the day. Such a fine man. Shannon lives at the lake by me and I see her walking. God love her.

    It would be delightful to meet you. Perhaps a delectable treat from Nichole's some day. Keep up the fine work with your blog. I find that folks do not comment on my lengthy thought-filled posts but delight over the lighter stuff. Family pictures are always fun but I love to wax eloquent on weighty matters. You do too and I appreciate that. Your very succinct spelling-out of the Good News will touch a hungry heart. That is for sure. Just keep listening for the still small Voice. Thanx for sharing your walk with Christ.

    Always a treat to meet a new Sister ~ Caren MacMurchy

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  2. Hey Danae,
    I apparently bookmarked your blog & etsy shop MONTHS ago, but now finally taking some time to go thru it. I LOVE it. I'm working on (and overwhelmed by) ours... nothing to see yet. Adorable, heartfelt, faith-filled, inspiring and all of the above! Apparently we also have a mutual friend, I think. Sabrina Knudsen - love her blog, too. Our family is preparing to move to Thailand to go in to full-time missions - CRAZY AMAZING. So, I'm planning to blog a bit about our life and crazy antics that somehow we survive! Anyway, thanks for sharing unrestrained faith in Christ.

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