SUMMER CONNECTIONS 2017: Mistakes

Mistakes:  He Can Redeem Them

Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
because he has come to his people and redeemed them. 

“You don’t make mistakes.  Mistakes make you.”  I heard that line in a movie I watched recently and it struck me as something that’s very true.  Our mistakes do shape us and form us.  Sometimes we learn from our mistakes and come out the other end stronger and wiser, but sometimes our mistakes cripple us, leaving us fearful and wounded.  Sometimes the “us” that makes mistakes is an “us” that is diminished and less than we were meant to be.

I’m the mother of four adult children, and one thing I learned from my years of active parenting is the value of letting kids make mistakes.  Believe me, my kids are far from perfect and they made LOTS of them.  Helping kids recover from a misstep is one of the best teaching tools out there.  Advice offered prior to a mistake is often ignored because the child thinks he knows better, or that he will be the one exception to the rule that catches everybody else.  Gently mopping up after, helping the youngster rebuild and recognize that most mistakes are not fatal, can seal the lesson in a more profound way than getting it right the first time.  It also gives a parent the opportunity to demonstrate great love.  There is nothing quite as sweet as messing up and recognizing the mess had no effect on how much one is loved.

That’s the way God, our kind and gracious Father, parents us.  He shows us the best way, but receives us with great love when we inevitably mess things up.  And while an earthly parent might be able to use a mistake to reinforce truth, God does much more than that.  If we are willing to cooperate with Him, He redeems the mess and uses our foolishness and what Satan intended for harm, to gently craft His likeness within us.  The worst we have to offer can be used by God to create beauty beyond measure within us.

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed  from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

And the best part of all this?  We are not forgiven and redeemed and then viewed as some weird combination of wounded yet acceptable.  God, because of Christ’s sacrifice for us, forgives us, redeems us, works His likeness into us, and views us as flawless.  Next time you’re afraid to do what you know God wants you to do because you’re scared you’ll make a big mistake, remember that even if you do mess up, your value has already been determined.  That was established the day Christ died for you.  Mistakes or not, you are precious and valuable to Jesus.

In fact, you’re flawless.

Listen to Flawless by MercyMe for a response song.

Prayer:  Kind and loving Father, thank you for your incredible love for us.  Thank you that no matter what mess we make or how often we err, your forgiveness and tender correction are available to us.  Thank you that you long to redeem our messes and create your likeness in us.  Amen. 

Submitted by Karen Vine

 

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