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We’re never perfect, not one of us.  We come from all kinds of pasts, with all kinds of mistakes.  But the Lord is always there, waiting for us to surrender our lives to him.  If we wait until we’re all cleaned up, without mistakes or “good enough”… we’ll never be ready for The Lord’s good grace.  Because we don’t have the strength to make ourselves ready for The Lord.
BUT the good news is that he doesn’t require that of us.  He wants us to run to him
just as we are
– with all of our imperfections, our embarrassing, shame-filled, imperfect pasts!  He is waiting for us just to open our hearts to his will.  But he’s not going to force himself on a single one of us.  He gives us each the free will to accept his love, his saving grace, his strength.  Once we do, then he begins immediately transforming us – WE DON’T DO IT – HE DOES!  We have only to be obedient and faithful!  And then he will immediately begin his good work in us.  But not instantly.  Over time, as we grow through his Word (the Bible) and communicate with him daily (prayer),  He transforms us into the beautiful,  strong,  loving persons that he intends us to be.  He makes us more like Jesus each day that we stay true to him.
And what a beautiful amazing work the Lord does in each of his obedient and faithful children!  He turns a murderous, self-righteous Saul into a loving Paul.  He turns an angry, thieving drug addict into a joyful, generous grandfather.  He turns a prideless, fear-filled prostitute into a confident and loving princess.  He turns a self-absorbed “good person” into a tireless helper of those in need.
Following are the verses that the beautiful ladies of Teen Challenge stand on-
verses from The Word that remind them of God’s faithfulness, the grace He offers each of us,
the strength He gives us, the comfort He covers over us:
Psalm 99:5
Exalt the Lord and worship at his footstool; he is holy.
Ezekiel 36:26
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you;
I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.
Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Isaiah 43:19
See, I am doing a new thing!  Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.
Philippians 3:13-14
Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do:
Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal
to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Galatians 6:9
Let us not become weary in doing good,
for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Philippians 4:11
I am not saying this because I am in need,
for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.
Psalm 147:3
He heals the brokenhearted
    and binds up their wounds.
Psalm 34:18
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
    and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
Psalm 32:7
You are my hiding place;
    you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance
Philippians 4:6
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition,
with thanksgiving,
present your requests to God.