I was talking with a man recently about a particular issue. In expressing a deep desire to be rid of a sin, he made the statement, “I don’t want to be what that makes me.”
That sentence struck me and has stuck with me ever since. That’s a strong declaration for us all. That’s not about him; it’s about mankind. Sin—especially when it becomes repetitive or habitual—begins to have a controlling factor, making us into an offender that we don’t like. The Jekyll and Hyde syndrome.
It’s interesting that all of us know exactly what he meant by “what that makes me.” It’s not just the sin itself, but also the residue it creates—guilt, shame, condemnation, and self-doubt, to name a few. And then there’s the distance we can allow it to create from our Heavenly Father.
How long do we take to ask for forgiveness? Wallow awhile in it? Stray further? Sin a little more, since we’ve already given in? Hide? Run?
It’s a good use of reflection and introspection time to ask, in all areas of temptation and sin, what is yours “making you”? Do you want to be “that?” And what residue might actually be affecting your life more than the sin?
My mentor often said, “The cross gives us the opportunity to not sin, whereas without it, we have no choice.”
No matter the temptations, sins, issues, addiction, problems, or residue that any of us struggle with, Christ’s death, resurrection, and redemption gives us hope, a way out, an answer. Does that make it easy? Of course not. But neither was dying on the cross and taking back the keys to Death and Hell.
Today, no matter how loud temptation is screaming your name or how horrible the enemy’s accusations are against you, know that Christ offers hope and forgiveness. The choice to not sin.
If any man says, “Well, you just don’t understand my problem. It’s different. I’ve gone too far.” If that is true, then what means is there is actually something that Jesus didn’t die for, something He can’t change, and that there is something that is impossible for God to do. I believe we all agree that is not true.
Don’t lose hope. Help is available. His name is Jesus. And contrary to the lie any of us may have bought into, He . . .
. . . is faithful and we can depend on Him to forgive us of our sins. He will make our lives clean from all sin. —1 John 1:9 NLV