Verse of the day...

~ “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” ~ Isaiah 41:10

Thursday, April 18, 2019

We are not defined by our mistakes......

Through scripture we find that if we are faithful to Him and confess our sins, we will be forgiven and cleansed. Through prayer and spiritual growth, we can more easily put our past behind us and move forward to achieve the great things God has planned for us.

Making mistakes is an unavoidable hazard in life.  As humans, whether by ignorance or insolence, we make decisions or statements we later regret.  However, what is most important in these situations is how we respond to our sins or mistakes.  In addition to making efforts to rectify our error, we should also introspectively reflect on the causes of our error in the first place.  In those times we may hear two voices... one of condemnation and another of conviction... and the voice we listen to will determine our self-perception and subsequent actions.

Too often, the voice that penetrates our hearts and minds is one of condemnation. “Condemnation frames one instance, one momentary lapse of judgment, and turns it into the defining moment of our life,” said Pastor Tim Winters.  Condemnation is the counterfeit version of conviction; it tells us that we need to change, but at the same time taunts us that we cannot change.  The truth is, God put condemnation on the shoulders of His Son, Jesus Christ, when He died for our sins, so that we do not have to experience it ourselves.

God’s word promises in Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”  One word that is often overlooked in this Scripture is the word “now.”  When Jesus died on the cross and paid the penalty for our sins, He did so for all of our past, present, and future transgressions, declaring in John 19:20, “It is finished.”  The price has already been paid; all we need to do is accept His ransom on our behalf.  God has forgiven us... now we need to forgive us.

While God’s word is clear that there is no condemnation for our sins, there are always consequences of our sins.  We must remember that sin is a choice, and it is oftentimes ugly, disturbing, hurtful, and frustrating.  We may have a choice in our sin, but we do not have a choice in the consequences.  Too often, our sins impact people who we never intended to affect.  As we respond to our sin and their inevitable consequences, believers who have been set free from ultimate condemnation must choose to listen to the voice of conviction in order to truly be healed and restored from iniquity.

God’s Holy Spirit, the voice of conviction, begins by reminding us who we are: God’s masterpiece, created in His image and loved by Him (Genesis 1:26-27; John 3:16).  Once God reminds us of who we are, He begins to deal with our sin.  Similar to effective parenting, a parent reminds his or her child who he or she is in relation to the parent, before taking disciplinary action.  In contrast, condemnation always starts with what we’ve done, and then accuses us of who are.  The enemy condemns us so he can destroy us.  God convicts us so He can correct us and make us more like Him.  Through the power of His Holy Spirit, He gives us the strength to overcome pride, addictions, greed and other roots of sin, and humbles us to seek forgiveness.  Even when someone you have wronged won't forgive you... God always does!!!

**Thank you Lord God for your forgiveness!  Thank you for loving me through all my mistakes!  Lord God I am so grateful that I can turn to you with anything and everything... good or bad!  Thank you for bringing me through the trials in my life... out the other side into your grace!  When the world and the ones I love condemn me I know you are always right there for me.... to convict me ... help me repent and help me forgive myself as you show me YOUR forgiveness!   Amen**

Many Blessings to you all

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