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I'm a 10!

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Do you think God takes a tally of your wrongdoings? How does your perception of Him influence the way you treat your spouse?

For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified. Hebrews 10:14, NASB

I (Teresa) had always been critical of myself—and of everyone else, for that matter. The way I understood God, He was up in heaven with a great big magnifying glass and tally sheet, inspecting every move I made. When I went to church or did a good deed, He'd make a mark on His tally sheet. But on that same sheet, He'd make a mark for every blunder, sin, or imperfection. I believed that my net number of "good" marks determined how much of God's love and acceptance I would receive.

This faulty perception of God had a huge impact on my marriage. I believed that since God was constantly inspecting me and looking for faults, then surely I should inspect my husband just as closely. In the midst of one of my inspections, I said some really hurtful things to David. Immediately, I knew I needed to confess this sin to God and ask for forgiveness.

In times past, as I confessed my sins to God and told Him how bad I'd been, I would have expected a halfhearted response: "Okay, Teresa," I could hear God reluctantly saying. "I'll forgive you. I'll mark your confession on the tally sheet, and we'll let it go this time."
But this time, my heavenly Father very gently said, "I know what you've done. You're forgiven, Teresa?'

When I heard God's truth—that He already knows my sins and accepts me anyway—a burden was lifted. I realized that God doesn't hold a magnifying glass and tally sheet over me. Instead, He holds the crown of thorns that His Son wore and the nails that pierced His hands and feet.

I saw God as He really is: the heavenly Father who sees me as one being perfected because of the Cross.

How have your wrong perceptions of God affected your relationship with your spouse?

Lord, help me put down the tally sheet and magnifying glass I hold over my spouse.

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