Perfection Isn't Required
I mess up every day – sometimes it’s the critical attitude I choose, or hurtful words I speak in anger. Other times I get on the comparison boat and give in to jealousy when I see people with similar skills who seem more successful than me. Can anyone relate?
God loves me in spite of me
Abraham is one of my heroes. He was chosen by God to be the father of the nation of Israel. He was told to leave his country, his relatives, and all that was familiar and travel to a land that God would show him. Abraham obeyed God and got moving.
I don’t know about you, but I think moving is difficult when you know where you’re going. Packing everything up and heading out on foot without a definite destination seems crazy. But Abraham trusted God.
Some major mess-ups
Don’t get discouraged if you don’t think you’d respond like Abraham. Understand that he wasn’t perfect. This same Abraham who is mentioned in four verses in the Hall of Faith chapter in Hebrews, blew it many times when he was on his journey.
Take a look at some of Abraham’s blunders:
Abraham told Sarah to lie about their relationship, so the Egyptians wouldn’t kill him (Genesis 12:12-13)
When it seemed impossible for Abraham and Sarah to have a child, Abraham slept with Hagar in order to produce an heir (Genesis 16:2)
On another occasion, Abraham lied about Sarah – saying she was his sister – in order to protect himself (Genesis 12:12-13; Genesis 20:2)
God’s 20/20 vision
In spite of these obvious sins, how did God see Abraham? As a man of faith (Hebrews 11:8-9)
And he (Abraham) believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness. Genesis 15:6 (word in italics mine)
It wasn’t the strength of Abraham’s faith that made him righteous, but the person he put his faith in: the Lord. What fantastic news!
The Person of our faith
The truth is all of us mess up. It’s comforting to know that God is well-aware of our short-comings and loves us anyway:
For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust…But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him…Psalm 103:14,17
When we place our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, God sees us clothed in the righteousness of His Son. Yes, it’s important to confess our sins and turn from them. But it’s equally important to remember: It’s not the strength of our faith that saves and keeps us, but the person we put our faith in – Jesus Christ.
How does the Lord want you to respond today?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for knowing all about me and loving me anyway. What a relief to know that You see me clothed in Jesus’ righteousness. Thank You for Your forgiveness. Help me choose to trust You when I’m faced with temptations. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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