Eph. 1:6,7 – So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.
Let’s face it, most misery is self inflicted. What do I mean? For example, financial chaos is likely the results of bad decisions with spending or laziness in regard to our employment, health issues can often be traced to poor eating habits, and alcohol and substance abuse lead to all sorts of miserable conclusions. Whether we are honest with ourselves or not, we are mostly victims of our own bad choices.
Obviously this is not always the case. Sometimes other people’s choices throw us into misery; a drinking parent, a cheating spouse, or a crooked boss. Other people can also lead us into the pit of despair. Whether our own choices or the behavior of others have messed up our lives, redemption brings us from the clutch of misery. Christ purchased us in our state of misery and brings us out. How does He do it? He does it by changing us. We are changed by His grace at the very core of our being; the results are that we start living our lives in a different way. Here is how Jonathan Edwards describes it.
“God hath made man’s emptiness and misery, his low, lost and ruined state into which he is sunk by the fall, an occasion of the greater advancement of his own glory, as in other ways so particularly in this, that there is now a much more universal and apparent dependence of man on God. Though God be pleased to lift man out of that dismal abyss of sin and woe into which he has fallen, and exceedingly to exalt him in excellency and honor, and to an high pitch of glory and blessedness, yet the creature hath nothing in any respect to glory of; all the glory evidently belongs to God, all is in a mere, and most absolute and divine dependence on the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.”
If you have struggled with bouts of depression that may lead to alcohol or substance abuse or any other type of destructive behavior, redemption is the solution. It starts with forgiveness but doesn’t stop there. He continues with transformation; we are changed on the inside. We see our lives differently, we see the Lord differently and our behavior begins to change; not because we have to but because we want to. Redemption has made us new kinds of people.