Sometimes we stray so far away from who we are and what we really stand for, but the grace of God brings us back.
Let’s talk about making the most of that.
You see, what many of us do, is that once we’ve fallen so far by the wayside, and gone so far off course, we feel ashamed to ever come back.
We must understand, however, that coming to the realisation that something isn’t right about the way we’re living, is only by the grace of God, therefore we mustn’t waste that privilege of being able to identify that something has gone wrong…
We mustn’t allow our fear of what people will say, to keep us somewhere that we no longer desire to be…
Of course, we may feel silly, ashamed, foolish, and many other emotions, because people probably advised us against many things that we ended up doing, but chose not to listen.
We finally realise that we’ve made a bad decision, or in some cases, a whole string of bad decisions, but a fear of their reaction to our return, holds us back from making the right turn to get back to who we were…
Getting back to me…
Getting back to the Christ in me…
This is something I feel believers should be more transparent and open about, because the truth is, everyone falls.
And no I’m not saying we should become more accepting of sin and doing wrong, but it’s simply about being more real about the fact that sometimes we may have off days/weeks/months or even years.
Sometimes things happen to us that cause us to fall away, people come into our lives that distract us, or even for no reason at all, we just lose focus, lack wisdom and choose to do things our own way.
It’s kind of like that prodigal son story found in Luke 15:11-32.
Once you’ve read this story, you’ll see that we have three important characters;
The Lost Son – living life his own way, indulging in worldly pleasures, making bad decisions.
The Obedient but Annoyed Brother – living for Christ diligently, listens to instructions, therefore doesn’t understand why there should be a fuss about someone who has only gone and done everything they shouldn’t be doing.
The Compassionate, Forgiving Father – a loving, constant, faithful, amazing God, who understands our human flaws, and is happy when we return to our senses, and return home.
Today I want to talk to us about the fact that at different points in our lives, we may actually find ourselves being able to relate to both sons…
Of course, we desire not to fall and sin and lose our way once we’ve accepted Christ, but sometimes, it happens.
So let’s talk about being The Lost Son…
The magnitude of how lost we are, or how lost we become, can vary between each person. So when I speak about being lost here, I’m talking about when we find ourselves out of character and living in a way that just doesn’t identify with what we truly believe in, or what we know we should be doing for Christ. Therefore this could be the smallest thing or the biggest, but it’s just anything we’ve been doing over and over again that isn’t pleasing in God’s sight; anything that is ruining our witness to the gospel.
My message for you today is, don’t be afraid to go home – to Get back to the real you, and get back to the Christ in you.
Understand that your mistakes do not define who you are, and just like the son in the story, God sees your remorse (Luke 15:18-19) and will welcome you with open arms (Luke 15:20).
Do not be ashamed to admit your faults. Don’t allow pride and shame to keep you in sin, but rather be open about your weaknesses with your brothers and sisters in the body of Christ and allow the mercy of God to turn your heart around and right your wrongs.
Embrace Getting Back to You, and you’ll be surprised who you inspire to do the same.
Now many of us may find ourselves in the position of The Obedient but Annoyed Brother, many times in our lives.
We just don’t understand how/why someone will choose to do all the things they’ve done. And therefore we get irritated and feel like they should know better.
My message for you each time you’re in this position will be the same, and that is, don’t judge and don’t push them away.
We have to show compassion just as our Father does, and even if we are going to advise them on their wrongs in order to help them not to fall again, let us ensure that we do this love.
Our work begins not only when our brother/sister finally realises their wrong, but actually, it starts from when we first see them venturing off (Galatians 6:1-2).
Let us be a constant voice that encourages them to come back, and let us ensure they know that they have someone to speak to if ever they need to.
When they’re back home, we ought to let the found soul feel warm, and let them know that we accept the new and true them, which is who they are in Christ. Therefore let’s refrain from making references to when, and what they did whilst lost, as a constant reminder of this may just push them back there.
As heaven rejoices over them, let us rejoice too (Luke 15:7, Luke 15:32).
I’ll finish by saying this; Getting Back to Me embraces the fact that who we are in Christ, is our true self.
Therefore I want to encourage us not to be ashamed of letting people know that we were once lost.
Allowing people to be open about their weaknesses, rather than hiding them and suffering in silence, means that they can receive the support, help and accountability that will actually enable them to overcome the various things they struggle with.
Therefore as the body of Christ, let us create an environment that enables people to discuss their flaws (with remorse and a desire to change), and let us provide the opportunity and support for them to grow into their True Christ-like self.
Keep the Faith, Don’t Stop Believing
God Bless you.