I was just talking yesterday with someone who was beating themselves up on the bad choices and mistakes they have made over the years. This is true for many, myself included, who can easily let our mistakes of the past occupy our mind and steal our joy. Maybe you’ve made a bad mistake at some point in your life. Or guilt of the sins of the past are eating you up inside? I have news for you… sin happens to everyone. We are created pure and perfect, in God’s image, but from there we all fall short.
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“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” – Romans 3:23
God understands the struggles of the flesh. He sent Jesus Christ to come walk with us on the earth so that He could understand the human condition. Jesus became flesh and experienced all of the pain, the emotions, the love, the sorrow, all the things that we struggle with Christ was here with us and understands what we go through. He faced unjustified persecution, ridicule, temptation, and suffering, none stronger then at Gethsemane just before he was turned over to be crucified.
But the greatest news is this, that Jesus died so that all our mistakes, failures, and sin would be wiped clean. Everything was nailed to the cross that day. Jesus himself said, “It is finished.” No more can anything in the past keep us from the love of God through Christ Jesus. Jesus defeated sin and the grave that day, forever.
So we can let go of that guilt, let go of that anger, let go of that self-deprecation that is eating us up inside. God gave, forgave, and forgives – all are justified freely. This gift is free. It doesn’t cost us a dime, not even a penny. We are forgiven freely and without limit through faith. We are saved by the gift of God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
This is fundamental to understanding God’s love for us. Everything good comes from God. He created us good, in His own image. And He understands that we have to battle the attacks of the enemy every single day. He understands that we get weak sometimes. He understands that we hurt, that we struggle sometimes, even when we try our best. The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.
So when we fail, understand that God forgives. He knows your heart. There is nothing that we can hide from him! He knows our hearts, and loves all of his children unconditionally, even when we fail. So what can we do in light of this amazing gift of love and life? We can love God back.
When Jesus was asked what was the greatest commandment, he replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” So if you have any doubt what we are to do, there is it straight from the mouth of Jesus.
When we love God an love others, all will be well with our souls. When we love someone, our actions should follow suit. Just like we aim to not let someone we love down, in the same way we should make choices and act in a way that pleases God. Let us put actions behind our words, and not merely give God lip service. Let’s focus on loving God and loving others today! And let us walk in forgiveness, because forgiveness is free!
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Dear heavenly Father, thank you for your Word today. We give you all the honor and glory and praise. Thank you for touching the hearts of everyone around me. Thank you for blessing the words from my lips. I declare that your hand is upon me today, and that you will guide my every step. You will direct my every thought, and every action, so that I might have a day that is perfect in your eyes. We honor you with our every word, our every thought, our every action. Help us to walk in your ways. Build our faith to be stronger every day. Remove temptation of the enemy, and forgive us when we fail. We know that your love and mercy reigns forever, in Jesus mighty name. Amen.
Today’s full reading: 1 Kings 8; 2 Chronicles 5; Psalm 99; Romans 3
Scripture References From Today’s Reflection:
- “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.” – 1 Peter 2:22
- “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” – John 1:8,9
- “and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Jesus Christ.” – Romans 3:24
- “The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.” – Matthew 26:41
- “He said to them, “You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of others, but God knows your hearts. What people value highly is detestable in God’s sight.” – Luke 16:15
- “For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.” – Luke 8:17
- “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.” – Matthew 10:8
- “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.” – Romans 1:7
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