By: Carole L. Haines
18 For I know that good does not dwell in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not…21 I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 22 For I joyfully agree with the law of God in the inner person, 23 but I see a different law in the parts of my body waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin, the law which is in my body’s parts. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:18, 21-25)
One of those days, I just had one of those days. Two days in a row actually. I messed up big time. I said things I shouldn’t have said. I didn’t keep it together. I hurt people with my words. I am messy, life is messy. I can’t think of a more flawed person than myself, but God uses me anyway. All the mess was confessed and all that went wrong was made right, but there are times that I am messy. Yet I am in good company. The Apostle Paul admitted he was messy.
Read the above Scripture again. Romans 7 seems to stick out like a sore thumb amid one of the greatest doctrinal books penned in the New Testament. Right in the middle of declaring many key doctrines, we have Paul’s admission of struggle with weakness and sin.
There it is, right in the middle, the Apostle Paul admitting he is messy. That is no accident. God inspired Paul to write it that way. Paul had no idea that 2,000 plus years later we’d be reading his words as the Holy Bible.
We have no idea what God is doing through us. I am convinced that God has given us our weaknesses as well as our strengths. Only Christ never sinned. Only God is pure and holy, kind, good, right and just. Paul had this to say about himself:
” It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost.”(1 Timothy 1:15)
Which is more Christian, hiding our mistakes behind a façade, or blatantly admitting we screwed up. Admitting we are messy is one of the most Christian things we can do.
Is this admission a Christ-like thing? NO! Because Jesus committed no sin.
But is it transparently Christian? YES! because we are all sinners saved by grace. So yes, I am messy, life is messy; but we are all works in progress to the Glory of God. All praise to the God of second chances. Some of us need 4,5,10 or 100 more do-overs. And God gives them to us. Thank You, Jesus.