As a Christian, I am often distressed when I realise that I have done things in my life that do not please God. Even though I try so desperately not to, for some reason, I just keep doing them.
So many times I have attempted to stop, and I continue to make these so called "promises" to God, that I will not ever do these things again – only to get up the next day and do them again!
The word "failure" screams at me – how can I have failed God again? How can I again ask Him for forgiveness and face Him once more after I have knowingly not followed Jesus' way? What do I do?
This was my state of mind on that Sunday. I felt so guilty and ashamed. I could not say to myself that I was being honest with God when I was I continually breaking these promises. I even wondered if He would listen to me one more time.
As I continued to reflect on these things, a song I particularly like to sing called "Here I am to worship" by Hillsong came to mind. One line states:
"Call upon the name of the Lord, and be saved"
As these words kept playing in my mind, I also recalled the passage in Romans 7: 14-20, where Paul talks about his struggles with sin. He writes about how he cannot understand the things he does. What he wants to do, he does not do, and that which he hates he does. I quickly find myself identifying with Paul in this matter, and wonder what it is I should do.
As I continued to meditate on this passage, I was humbled. I realised how imperfect I am and understood how much I need God in my life. I knew I couldn't rely on my own strength or "willpower" to remain a follower of Jesus. I needed God's guidance.
I resolved to turn to God my Saviour: the God who is all knowing, loving and forgiving.
Who will cleanse me of my sins, and create in me a pure heart but God? As the words of the song say, we should continually call upon the name of the Lord in times of need, and He will help, guide, and sustain us. I knew I needed to turn to God in times such as these.
So I prayed that morning and it is still my prayer today – that God continues to cleanse me of my transgressions, and instead fills me with the fruits of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control (Galatians 5: 22-23).
I hope that this can be an encouragement - God loves us so much that he gave his only son (John 3:16). If He loves us this much, surely He will hear and answer our cries for help and forgiveness if we come to Him in repentance and with a sincere heart. He will always be there for us regardless of the circumstance - like a father who is always there for His children – He will never leave us nor forsake us.
As for me, I want to be there with Him regardless of my circumstance. Not that I should take Him for granted and continue in my sinful nature, but I should not continue to be stuck in a whirlwind of sin thereby distancing myself from God. I should continue to seek and trust Him in all I do or say and draw closer to Him.
When I find myself in this situation, I'm turning to God – it is a decision I'm very glad I made today.