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Come back to the place of safety, all you prisoners who still have hope! I promise this very day that I will repay two blessings for each of your troubles. Zechariah 9:12 (New Living Translation)

The prophet Zechariah ministered to the people of Israel during a very difficult time in the lives of the people of God. They were just returning from years in exile, a consequence of their disobedience to God. It was to rebuild their cities and their lives.

It’s important to remember that the reason for the exile was that the people intentionally and willfully chose to disobey God. They weren’t tricked or deceived. They knew better. But regardless of their knowledge they made a decision to go their own way. Now, their time of discipline was complete and it was time to move on.

The word Zechariah is given for the people is this: “Return to me. Come back to the one place you know you can always return to.” God has the same message for each of us today. You may be suffering now from the consequences of poor choices. Your life may be full or worry, shame, guilt, remorse, fear, anger or a multitude of other factors. It’s possible that the choices you have made will have consequences that will be with you the rest of your life. Even so, God is saying, “Come home. Come to me. You once were imprisoned, trapped in a life of meaninglessness and pain. Come home.”

I have a friend who was involved in a terrible snowmobile accident in which he lost both of his legs. The events leading up to the accident were not good. He never should have been on that snowmobile and riding with the people he was. For the rest of his life he’ll have a reminder of that accident.

The story has a ‘good ending’ of sorts however. As a result of the accident he has found a renewal of his faith and a trust in Jesus such as he’d never had before. He ‘came home’ to his God and Savior Jesus Christ and his life was dramatically changed.

You may be feeling imprisoned by your sins. You may feel shut up under a sense of your guilt and shame. Look to Jesus. He is the only one who can deliver you from your offenses and give you hope regardless of what you have done in the past.

Zechariah gives those of us another promise. He says “I will repay two blessings for each of your troubles!” What an amazing promise of grace. Not only are we forgiven, we can expect to enjoy all fullness of grace and plenty of spiritual and physical blessings. God doesn’t just forgive us when we come home, He blesses us!

No matter where you are in life. Come home to Jesus. Let Him remove the guilt and shame of your past. Trust Him to bless you beyond all you can imagine.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, I come before you today realizing that my life is a mess. I’ve made choices I knew were wrong. I’ve accepted you as my Savior but I still struggle with habits, anger, shame and guilt. I know better but still go my own way. Please forgive me for my rebellion. Empower me to live for you today and to experience all the blessings you have for me. Amen.

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