I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God. He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness. (Isaiah 61:10)
Our minds, wills and emotions are filled with joy in Jesus because He has dressed us up in salvation! We wear salvation and we are covered in the Blood of Jesus which is the robe of righteousness. When God sees the Blood of Jesus on us, He sees His Son’s blood which made us righteous and able to come boldly to the throne of grace to obtain mercy in time of need. We are forgiven of all our sins and adopted into God’s family.
In the spring of 2004 something wonderful happened and I want to share it with you to demonstrate God’s view of us. I visited a new church on a Sunday morning in San Diego California with a friend. I knew the Lord, but I was bound with so many issues. I was still struggling with drug addiction and sexual confusion. I was also reaching out to God for help. That morning I pushed myself to get up for church because I was dreadfully and painfully coming down off of a few days of being high. I wasn’t partying with friends but rather using drugs alone to dull the deep painful wounds that festered in my soul. I hated myself and thought God didn’t want anything to do with me anymore because of my sin. Feeling this way, I still wanted to honor God in a tiny way and sit in the back of a church where no one knew me and just weep before Him. So I did. While sitting there I spoke out and called on Jesus and asked Him if He was pleased with me by me going to church that morning. I just knew I wouldn’t get an answer because surely God wanted me cleaned and righteous before I could have any communications with Him, so I thought. At that very moment to my amazement, the pastor’s wife ,who I never met before, cried out from the platform to the very front, “young man in the back come up here!” I looked behind me, but I was the last in the back, but she just couldn’t mean me I thought? Quickly I realized it was me, so I rose up and walked up front knowing that this had nothing to do with what I just asked Jesus. When I reached the front, she put the mic down and whispered in my ear,” I have a direct word for you from Jesus Himself. He is telling me to tell you that He is pleased with you.” She stopped and said nothing else. I was amazed, dumbfounded and broken at the same time. Jesus had answered my prayer directly, quickly and with an answer that perplexed me. How could He be pleased with me if I was still battling drugs and sexual immorality? Now, I know the answer. Jesus knew that I had accepted Him and believed in Him and desired freedom but was bound by the demonic realm and generational curses. He saw the Michael that was inside crying out to God, when I, myself, saw the Michael filled with sin and self hatred. He was pleased with my desiring freedom through Him. He also saw me washed in His blood and wearing salvation as a garment. If I was accepting of my sin and didn’t want freedom then I would have been rejecting the very gift of Jesus by that action. My constant crying out to Him and battling my demons demonstrated the tenacity of a Jacob that wouldn’t let go of God until I was blessed. I saw myself through the eyes of sin when Jesus saw me through His blood as an already cleansed man. He sees the end from the beginning. He knows if you will choose Him and work out your salvation.
If you know Jesus and are struggling with an issue or sin in your life, keep fighting. It is when you give up the fight that you lose! I hate sin and have overcome so much of it in my life but it was a process. What made fighting through that process possible was God’s grace to empower me to no longer live in sin. God caught me first, then cleaned me up. The proof of my salvation is the fruit in my life, but fruit takes time to grow. If you are doing everything you know to do and are following hard after God but there is still something that you are struggling with, God says to you,”I am pleased with you.” His pleasure in you is that He sees His Son’s blood cleansing you constantly which is the garment of salvation, your robe of righteousness!
Please don’t give up your fight! Your struggle is worth the end result! Fight on, fight on!
Pastor Michael Cannatello