Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Christian Failures

It is sometimes easy to feel like a failure as a Christian. We start out in the Christian life with great plans. We are going to accomplish marvelous things for God. And somehow our life does not turn out the way we thought it would. We feel like we are caught up in the daily grind. And we have long ago given up on our dreams. Or we live for the day when we will get our act together and truly live for God. Moses found himself in such a position (see Exodus 2,3). He had thought to do what he could to help his people, the Israelites, who were enslaved by the Egyptians. But his attempts to accomplish this failed and ended in his losing his place in Egyptian  society and becoming an exile. And he ended up tending his father-in-law’s sheep in the Sinai desert. Until he encountered a burning bush.

When we think we are failures, we need to remember who our God is. One of the first things God did for Moses was to tell him His Name. God said His Name was “I Am who I Am” (Exodus 3:14). This means that God is the eternal One, the One who does not change. It also means that because He does not change, He is always faithful to His promises. What does that mean for our lives today? We must remember that if we have put our faith in Christ, He has saved us (Ephesians 2:8,9; Romans 4:4,5; Philippians 3:9) and made us His children (John 1:12,13; Galatians 4:4-7; Romans 8:14-17). He is also at work in us to change us into the people He wants us to be (2 Corinthians 3:18; Philippians 2:13; Colossians 1:29). He also says He will guide and direct our lives to accomplish His purposes through them (Ephesians 2:10; 2 Corinthians 3:5,6; Romans 8:28-30). 

The problem is that God’s  purposes for our lives may not match our purposes, and God’s timing may not fit our timing. Therefore, it is important to trust God ,that He is at work in our lives right now to accomplish His purposes (Proverbs 3:5,6; Psalms  37:3-6; Isaiah 40:31). Now I am not saying we should not ask if there is something different  we should be doing to better serve God. And I am certainly not trying to justify sinful behavior that we need to admit to and repent of (Proverbs 28:13; 1 John 1:9; 2 Corinthians 7:10). But  we need to put aside the idea that we are failures and recognize that God can meet us where we are at to take us to where He wants us to be. I wish that I could promise everyone a burning bush. But sometimes we do not see the things we want coming about, at least in our lifetimes (Hebrews 11:13-16; 2 Samuel  7:1-17; Jeremiah 45:1-5). But we can trust God, that He is at work in our lives to accomplish His will.

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