It’s Not About Perfection, It’s About Repentance
by Stuart Briscoe
We all have a great tendency to camouflage our wrongs, but if we have a heart for God, what we cover up becomes an inter-nal, physical infection. It grows and grows. We may appear rela-tively healthy on the outside, but if there’s an internal infection it will eventually show and affect us in a terrible way.
If we don’t deal with the things that are fundamentally wrong in our relationship with God, they will ultimately be ex-posed. We may be able to cover them for a while and continue to go through the motions of being godly. People may think that everything is all right, and we may even start believing so too. However, unless something is done about our problems, our un-confessed sins will eventually find us out. They will bring about real spiritual, emotional and physical damage to us and to those whose lives we touch.
Not just our sinful acts are bad. Not just what we do to peo-ple is bad. There is an underlying principle of sin that we need to confront. Listen, when we sin, we despise the Word of the Lord because, knowing what God says, we choose to do what we want. It is out-and-out rebellion. Despising God’s Word leads us to despise God Himself. What we are really saying is, “I’m going to do my own thing because I prefer me to God.” That is an in-sult to Him. Adultery, lying and stealing are bad enough; but at the root of those acts we show utter contempt for the God who gave the commands. As someone once said, “Secret sin on earth is open scandal in heaven.”
In our world it is relatively easy for us to forget the fallenness of our race. It is convenient for us instead to as-sume we are like everybody else, fairly normal. We have our strong points and our weak points; but overall, we are pretty nice people. Sure, we’re not perfect, but when all is said and done, who is?
Do you see how we can slide away from confronting what we really are? God says, by contrast, that there’s a fundamental propensity to sin within us. If we’re going to be transformed in Christ, we must confront it and deal with ourselves like David did in Psalm 51.
Come pleading for mercy. Don’t ever dare ask God for justice. Don’t ever come to Him demanding your rights. Why? Because you will get them, and you’ll wish you hadn’t! Come to Him on the basis of His mercy and appeal to His grace, His unfailing love and His compassion. Declare your unworthi-ness, and in deep contrition, ask for forgiveness. That is the way back.
Let me ask you a question, point-blank. Is there sin in your life? As you read these pages, is the Holy Spirit pointing out the wrong and rebellious choices you have made, or a satisfaction with spiritual mediocrity? Can you say to God, “I need Your power. I need Your joy. I need Your cleansing.”?
Perhaps you need the assurance that He still can use you. It may be you sense that He still has something for you to do. I plead with you to confess your sin and ask Him to once again move in your life. Will you do it now?
From Chapter 10, “The Repentant Heart”, of the book David’s Heart: Devoted and Distracted by Stuart Briscoe
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