Have you ever had one of those really down on yourself sort of days? Those days where you wonder if you will ever get anything right and if there’s any way God could use you? I have had lots of those days. I messed up, turned to my Bible, got down on my knees and confessed it, but I just felt wrung out inside. I felt like I would possibly never do anything right again. This was it! I think to myself. This was the straw that broke the camel’s back! There is no way God will ever be able to use me to do anything again!
That’s the point at which I have to remind myself of the beauty of mercy. First of all, we know we can confess our sins to God and that He really does forgive them! 1 John 1:9 says, loud and clear, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Something you might not know or remember is that the verse about forgiveness comes right after the verse that says, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” God not only is ready to forgive us our sin, but He knows that we will sin. Every single time God has asked us to do something, He asked it in the full knowledge that we will still sin and exactly how we will sin. He has still chosen to work through us in the past.
The very next chapter of 1 John (so that would be 1 John 2, in case you didn’t catch that), says, “And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.” So, God expects us to sin and He is ready to forgive our sins BECAUSE our sins have already been paid for by Jesus Christ, who now advocates for us!
The main thing that I struggle with is when I miss opportunities to tell others about Jesus. I get all ready to look for opportunities, I pray that they’ll come around, and then when I meet one, I get so tongue-tied and nervous that I just let the moment pass. That has happened so. many. times. It’s pretty ridiculous. And every time it happens I’m back on my roller coaster of self-pity.
But God does work through repentant people! If you need proof, just check out this list!
God has chosen to use us, despite our sins, so that we can be involved in His work and so that we can see exactly what he is doing. In one of Paul’s letters, he captured so beautifully the state that we are in. He said that Christ said to Him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). Then Paul said, “Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (verses 9-10).
God knows we are sinners and that we mess up. Rather than letting that discourage us to the point of giving up, we need to remember that our weakness shows God’s strength even more. Because of our sin, there is no doubt that it is our Creator working through us and we can let all the glory go to Him.