Fact about humans: none of us are perfect. We can strive for perfection but we will never be able to be perfect. We make mistakes. We mess up. We sin. We fail God far too often. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
Thankfully, we have a God who gives multiple chances. Take the story of Jonah for instance. In Jonah 1:1-2, Jonah was charged with a task from God to go tell the people of Nineveh about Him. Now, Nineveh was not a very righteous city; in fact, I’ve heard it referred as being the “Sin-City of that day and age”. In verse 3 of Jonah chapter 1, we read that “Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.” Jonah ran in the complete opposite direction of where he was supposed to go and tried to run away from God. Jonah messed up. Afterwards, he was thrown overboard a ship and swallowed by a great fish.
In Jonah 3:1-3, we read that God charged Jonah with the exact same command, to go to Nineveh and preach Him to the people there. God didn’t tell Jonah that he is a failure, He didn't tell him that he would never amount to anything, that he messed up big time. God was telling him to try again. Even though he messed up, God loved Jonah enough to give him a second chance.
In Luke 15 we read of the parable of the Prodigal Son. The son messed up, but the father welcomed him home with open arms full of love.
The book of Judges is a continuous cycle of the Israelites messing up and God saying “try again."
God isn't a father who puts down His children for messing up. He doesn’t hate us. He doesn’t tell us that we are a failure. It pains Him seeing us doing wrong, as it would any father who sees his children doing wrong; but He loves us enough to discipline us when we do wrong and gives us unending love and forgiveness.
“Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, that we may share His holiness. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it” (Hebrews 12:9-11).
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
Time and time again, God shows us His love and tells us to try again.
My name is Jennifer Odom and I've been a Christian since October 2011. I'm a 19-year-old sophomore at Freed-Hardeman University. I like reading, crocheting, and Bible journaling. My favorite verse is Philippians 1:21. I write for Tomorrow's Church, Today and am the editor for Beyond the Foam. I hope to speak at several ladies days, become a music teacher, get involved with mission work, and bring as many people as I can with me to heaven. Stepping in Light is affiliated with the church of Christ.