When You Mess Up, God Gives Mercy


Did you know you can confidently take your sins and mistakes to God? He won’t condemn you or scold you. He’ll only show you compassion. Learn more about God’s mercy.

“Let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” (Hebrews 4:16, NLT)

Jesus’ ministry was all about mercy. In fact, there wasn’t a person he didn’t show mercy to.

The definition of mercy is “undeserved forgiveness and unearned kindness.” When somebody forgives you and you don’t deserve it, that’s mercy. When somebody shows you a kindness you haven’t earned, that’s mercy. And the Bible says that God wants to show you mercy.

The truth is, you need mercy every single second of your life. The air you breathe and the water you drink are mercies from God. You wouldn’t be alive if it wasn’t for the mercy of God. God made you because he wanted to love you and show you his mercy.

There are many reasons you need God’s mercy in your life, starting with this one:

You need God’s mercy when you’ve messed up.

We all do. None of us is perfect! We don’t measure up to our own standards, much less to God’s standards. Ecclesiastes 7:20 says, Not a single person on earth is always good and never sins” (NLT). In other words, nobody gets it right all the time.

The Bible also says, “We all stumble in many ways” (James 3:2 NIV).

Have you ever stumbled with your words, attitude, actions, or emotions? Maybe you have shown the wrong emotional response in a relationship and ended up hurting someone. When you keep stumbling over your sins and mistakes, how does God respond to you? With mercy.

“Let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most” (Hebrews 4:16 NLT).

God wants you to go to him with your habits, hurts, and hang-ups—and to go with confidence! He’s not going to scold you or condemn you. He’s going to respond with mercy.

Talk It Over

What are three ways that God shows you mercy in your daily life?

In what ways is it difficult for you to accept God’s mercy when you’ve messed up? How is it easy?

What sin do you need to confess and receive mercy for today?

No matter what you’ve done or where you’ve been, you’ve got a place in God’s forever family ready and waiting for you. The invitation is wide open. Just believe and receive.

Are you ready? Here’s a prayer you can start with:

“Dear God, I know when I die, I’m going to give an account of my life to you. I know I have sinned against you, and I have lived by my plan, not yours. I want that to change, starting right now. I want to turn away from my sins and toward you.

“Thank you for sending Jesus to die for all that I’ve done wrong so that I don’t have to pay the penalty. I know I don’t deserve your forgiveness. I know only your grace can save me, Lord. I could never be good enough to get into a perfect place.

“Jesus, thank you for loving me so much that you took all my guilt on yourself. You made me acceptable for heaven, and I ask you to save me. I believe in you, Jesus. And I believe you will keep your promise to save me instantly, completely, and eternally. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.”

If you just prayed to accept Jesus, please email me at Rick@PastorRick.com and let me know about it. I’d like to send you some free materials to help you start your journey with Jesus.

This devotional © 2022 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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