October 2, 2017

Paul J Banta

1 John 1:8-10 says, “If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.  But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.  If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.” – (NLT)

Personal failures in my life and career helped me to move forward and grow spiritually. You can only go backward for so long before God begins in you a new forward process that He’s designed for you. It’s a matter of how many times you’re willing to go back and forth on the same failure that He is concerned about, and which you should be concerned about as well. The question is how fast and how much you want to grow when you fail, and who is pulling you the wrong way or the right way. Growing as a Christian in this world and for God’s Kingdom is developing yourself in grace despite your sins and bad decisions. Remember we are all sinners, but because of His gracious gift of grace He still wants you to serve Him and is there to forgive you because of His never-ending love for you and His drive to use you for Himself.

Growth is still a prerequisite of the Christian life, regardless of your sin natures. Don’t think for one second that the baggage (sin) you haul around should stop you from growing. Christ wants you to confess once and not repeat the same confession of failure over and over. You release sin to Him so you can have a maximum effect in serving Him, enjoy fellowship, and have the joy of seeing Him enable you to be successful. Just as serving Him takes commitment, it takes commitment not to continue in the sin you’ve confessed.

One of my favorite verses is one I learned many years ago. It’s verse with a great promise about when we fail. God is prepared to forgive; He is faithful. He says in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” What a deal! This reminds you that you can do nothing for the Lord unless you abide in Him, as He tells us in John 15:5. He wants you to depend on Him all the time and grow in grace and knowledge about Jesus, and then advance in your abilities to serve Him, not to be blocked by your failures. God wants to give you grace, so you’ll believe in Him to lead you. Just as your players want to mature and fully grow their game, Gods want you to do the same with the relationship He has with you. He does not want your failures to interfere with this relationship.

What’s your next move?