Mess Up

<<mistake, blunder>>

When we ignore God’s boundaries and yield to temptation or fall into sin, the old fleshly nature within ‘takes over’. Satan tries to capitalise on the event, bringing condemnation and discouragement together with a sense of failure and total unworthiness. He would like us to abandon all hope of ever getting back up again, thinking that God is finished with us and we are worse than useless. It’s at these vulnerable times we need to refuse to buy into his lies and take the focus off ourselves by turning our attention to Jesus. He will not turn away anyone who genuinely repents and then is prepared to humbly move on, co-operating with Him to walk in victory (1 Jn 1:9).

God often gives several opportunities to amend our rebellious behaviour and go His way, although we should never presume we will be given a second chance. However, our testimony is tarnished with each indiscretion, for while sin is forgiven and the eternal penalty is removed the earthly consequences

Thank God for His amazing grace, and the blood that cleanses

can’t be avoided. The taking of ownership by acknowledging and owning up (with restitution if appropriate) indicates maturity and is a good indicator of a change of heart and altered behaviour going forward (Mt 3:8). Increasingly our lifestyle and character should be coming into alignment with God's ways.

With Jesus to aid us, we should be getting stronger in our faith and ability to resist Satan’s attacks, but we will be susceptible to stumbling along the path of life. Even though God’s grace and mercy are extended to us, we are not to go on sinning so that we can experience more of His kindness and forgiveness (Rom 6:1; Gal 5:1)! So do not excuse or gloss over sin, rather try to “Conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ” (Phil 1:27). Although we recognise we are not perfect we should be determined to move forward in the process of becoming righteous, for “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil 1:6, 3:12-14).

Jesus said we are primarily responsible for glaring faults in our lives, rather than pointing out the small blemishes in the lives of others (Mt 7:3-5). All our lives have been messed up by sin, yet God welcomes our repentance and forgives us. Even extending forgiveness unlimited times (Mt 18:22). Oft times we humans are not as lenient, instead labelling as failures or losers those who step out of line and even if they have paid the judicial penalty, they are treated with suspicion and contempt. When God has forgiven a fellow sinner, who are we to withhold forgiveness. However, depending on the nature of the blunder it may call for a period of probation to regain trust. Once sin has been addressed through repentance, we can empower people who clearly want to amend their past sinful ways to regain a humble yet true perspective of their standing with God (Gal 6:2).

Meanwhile there are numerous accidents, incidents and happenings that we experience resulting in less than desirable outcomes that are due solely to living in a fallen world and coupled with our limited knowledge and forethought. In these 'error of judgement' and

Will I become bitter or better?

annoying situations there is no 'sin' to repent of, rather its a case of remedying the situation if possible and warranted, and then moving on hopefully wiser and more prepared for the next challenge that life throws at you. In these situations that are not our fault because of our wrong doing we are to respond in Godlike ways. All situations are character forming and character displaying opportunities whether we were directly responsible (because of our sin), or our unwise decisions besides being implicated by just being alive in this sin tarnished imperfect world. "In all things God works for the good of those who love Him" (Rom 8:28). What a source of comfort when the world crashes around us, provided we are walking humbly and obediently with Him. Endeavour to turn all adverse 'not-being-ministered-to' circumstances when around for good. What are the beneficial lessons I can learn from this 'things go wrong' situation that has been allowed to purify me? We may not choose these events but we do decide if we become bitter at life and God through them or become more Christlike in character. God in His love and wisdom has appointed these trying situations to make, not break us.

See also: boundaries, condemn, discouragement, failure, flesh, guilt, lifestyle, mistakes, not being ministered to, ownership, reaction, repentance, restoration/restore, second chance, temptation.