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// Brenda Thomas
THERE IS NOT a person alive who hasn't made more than one mistake. We've all said and done things that we have later regretted. I know sometimes I've said something and then I wanted to go back and say, "OH, LET'S REWIND THAT TAPE. I DIDN'T REALLY MEAN THAT." We'd all like to be able to go back in time and say, "Hey, let's wipe that out of our memories." Sometimes I think God allows our human side to take over just to get us to lighten up and stop taking ourselves so seriously and stop over-spiritualizing our mistakes.
We're all looking for someone else to blame. Who caused this? Was it the devil? Was it God? Most of the time we just need to look in the mirror and admit, "I blew it. I failed. I really messed up." The right response is to recognize our part in the situation, admit our wrongdoing, and tell
those we may have hurt or offended that we are sorry. Then we need to REPENT BEFORE GOD, RECEIVE HIS FORGIVENESS, FORGIVE OURSELVES, AND MOVE ON.
Although the Bible tells us in Genesis 1:26 that God created man in His likeness and image, man is not infallible. We are going to have moments of imperfection. We are going to:
Forget the cookies are in the oven
Leave the coffee pot on all day
Forget to turn the curling iron off
Leave the dog locked outside
Forget to pick the kids up from soccer practice
The list could go on and on. What do we do on days like that? Sit down and have a pity party? "Why God, why? Why is this happening to me? I am such a victim of this unseen plot to destroy me."
I am not minimizing the fact that we have an enemy called the devil. He devises plots and plans to try and trip us up and lead us into temptation. But God has given us something very powerful called the human will. With God's help, we can make choices that will keep us on the path to enjoying the good life He's promised us in His Word.
And WE CAN ALSO LEARN TO CONTINUALLY LET GO OF WHAT HAS HAPPENED IN THE PAST. When we have missed it, we must use our will and make a conscious decision to act on what the Word of God tells us to do.
One device the enemy uses to paralyze people and keep them from moving forward in life is condemnation. He tries to condemn us about the time we wasted before we knew the Lord or even after we were saved but weren't fully walking with Him. The Lord spoke to a good friend of mine as she was ministering one time and said, "Many of My people are spending too much time crying over wasted years and mistakes they have made."
Romans 8:1 (NKJV) says, "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit." God is not so concerned about those 20, 30, or even 40 years that we weren't serving Him. He's not uptight about it. And He wants us to get over it! He wants us to let it go and make the next 40 years the best we possibly can.
REFUSE TO LIVE IN THE PAST AND IN REGRET. Put the past behind you, look to the future, and be useful in the Kingdom of God. God doesn't create any junk, and He has no unusable members in His family. He wants to use every single one of us!
God is so merciful and full of loving-kindness that He is not holding anything that you've ever done over your head. He doesn't have a stamp that says "unusable." He doesn't write that on anybody's forehead. Your mistakes are not greater than His grace. You are valuable and precious to Him, and He has an awesome plan in store for you!
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