Several years ago, I made a short series of huge mistakes.
Last night, I was filling out the paper work to receive my ministerial credentials. Part of the application asked if I had committed particular acts within the last seven years.
I was required to confess my mistakes to complete strangers, but I was okay with that.
My mistakes-as shameful, embarrassing, hurtful, etc. as they were/are-belong to me. This belonging is not saying I am my mistakes, but I do value them because of where they have brought me- to redemption and grace.
As I wrote my explanation I was not ridden will guilt or shame, nor was I full of pride. It was a statement of who I had been and what I had done. The writing didn’t end with where I was. It ended with where I am now, and where I am headed because of the messy parts of my life.
The beauty in the the explanation was what came after the list of failings. I wrote, “I regret my failings, but I value what God has made out of them.”
My prayer today is you will not hold on to your failures as a weight to prevent you from reaching up to heaven, but you would lay them down as a step you stand on to bring you closer to God.
I pray you will see the great worth in the mess we make of our lives. The worth is not the mess itself, but what God can do with it.
Your mistakes help you to fully understand grace, make you more relatable to those who have not lived perfectly, and bring hope to those who believe they can never be whole again.
My life is one small story in the great story of God’s plan to redeem humanity from the brokenness caused by selfish will and foolish actions. He is in the business of repairing the damages and using the flawed pieces to create beautiful stories out of our lives.
In this, our past failures are not something preventing us from being who God wants us to be. Instead, when we come to God with the broken pieces caused by our failings, they are the very things that allow us to understand God wants nothing more than to love us and be loved in return.
Your mess is beautiful, not because it is a mess, but because it can reveal who you are in God’s eyes-loved, forgiven, and his.