I love You Lord and all I want is to serve You. I’ll never let You down God!” That’s what I prayed the day before I committed sin big time. There’s no need to go into the gory details but I do confess that I sinned against my God. Now what to do? I really do love God, and I really do want to serve Him with all my heart. But it seems that there are times I just simply can’t help myself. I don’t want to do it but I do it any way.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that I have no choice. I am saying that there are times I don’t walk in the Spirit and so I fulfill the desire of the flesh. However I don’t think I’m alone in this. I’m sure I’m not the only weak one. Just the same if I am the only one then I’m glad God made provision to escape just for me.
The Bible says, “My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the whole world.” (1 John 2:1-2 NKJV).
I know that there are many of you reading this that are in the same boat I am in. You see after nearly 35 years of ministry I have come to know when we repent to God that the goal is to be perfect before Him but it’s a whole lot easier to say it than to live it. I find myself failing God in the smallest of things. There are times I have felt like Peter when He told Jesus that He was ready to die for Him then that very night denied Him. Peter repented of that and Jesus forgave him just as He does each of us when we come to Him and admit our sin.
The problem is that over the years Christians who have wanted to appear as being perfect have had to cover their sin and unrighteousness to keep up the charade. When those who have been honest with themselves, admitting their sin, see those who seem to be perfect, then they come to think that they must not have the goods and so simply give up with the thought that they’ll never make it. Dear brothers and sisters in Christ this is exactly why God inspired John to write the above quoted verses. We should not sin but when we do we have Jesus Christ our Advocate Who is forever pleading our case.
The bottom line is this: We must try to not sin. Sometimes we will win and as we learn to depend on the Spirit and walk in Him we will find those victories coming more and more frequently. However sometimes we will fail. In these times remember that our repentance at salvation was just the first of many to come. We must learn to not “call it quits” but simply pick ourselves up, dust off the seat of our pants, ask God to forgive us, truly repenting, accept His forgiveness and go on serving Him.
It is not an excuse to sin. It is not to be used as a “cloak of maliciousness” (1 Peter 2:16). But our sincere repentance will indeed bring us to the place where we will hear God say, “I forgive you . . . “
by Jerry Ousley