Recently, I heard an interview on The Joy FM radio station featuring Chad Mattson, lead singer of one of my favorite Christian singing groups, Unspoken.
He talked about the fact that he continues to make mistakes in his life.
As I listened to the interview, I realized I still held on to a delusion in my Christian walk.
A part of me believes there will come a time when I will no longer make mistakes, sin, fall, or fall short or what God wanted me to do. Some days I act like that time is already here.
I thought of Chad and his testimony of being delivered from drug addiction a number of years ago. Since he’s such an excellent singer and songwriter and has ministered to so many people around the world, I wanted to believe he had it all together—that he no longer blew it, like I still do too often.
In this interview, he set me straight, and he introduced me to a song he wrote on the subject of continuing to make mistakes as a Christian and having to rely on God’s mercy.
As I ponder this subject, I realize I want to believe that Christian maturity is about no longer sinning, but the truth is maturity is evidenced by admitting wrong and making things right as soon as possible. As my Bible study teacher has said again and again, “Don’t be wrong long.”
I confess sometimes I want to defend my rebellious ways and call the wrong attitudes and actions I get caught up in something else.
Not long ago, I made a series of mistakes in a day. I let fear enter in and worry take over. This led to feeling depressed and immobilized. Because of this, I lashed out at a loved one. I traced the whole series of mistakes—sins—back to believing a lie of the enemy that a young person I was praying for and trying to mentor would never get a job because of some errors in her life in recent days.
Instead of believing God’s promises, I believed the enemy’s lie.
Instead of taking thoughts captive and bringing them to Jesus Christ, I ran to the overthinking/wrong thinking cave in my mind with them.
Instead of praying and seeking God and His counsel on the subject causing fear, I let negative thoughts wrap themselves around me until I could hardly breathe. Then I tried to infect someone else with negative thinking.
What a mistake all of this was. It led to a ruined morning and a fight with a loved one.
Finally, as I sought the Lord, He revealed truth to me. He reminded me it didn’t matter what I thought. What mattered was what He said and what He could and would do.
I’m so glad I had the opportunity to listen to that interview on the radio. This fellow Christian reminded me the value of maintaining a humble attitude and admitting, “I’m not perfect; I still sin, and I have to cling to God’s mercy to make it through life.”
I realize as I look back on the incident from days ago, the turnaround came when I began to confess my sin out loud to my loved one. “I’m giving in to fear,” “I tell others not to worry, but now I’m caught in that trap,” and “I’m not believing God.”
It’s only as I admit sin—my mistakes—that mercy flows. If I rationalize, minimize, or make excuses for my sins, it sets up a wall to block out God’s mercy.
I’m reminded of the two men praying in the story in Luke 18:9-14.
One thought he was a mature believer and was incapable of sinning. He prayed, “God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even this tax collector” (verse 11).
I confess I’ve had this attitude before. Instead of admitting my own sins, I look at the wrongs of others and try to convince myself I’m better.
Next, the tax collector had the chance to pray. He said, “God, have mercy on me, a sinner” (verse 13)
Now I know for certain that there will never come a day when I will be immune from having the need to utter those words.
I praise God my mistakes aren’t deadly. They don’t keep God’s love or grace out. They don’t keep me from being used, and God can even use my mistakes for His glory.
Thank You, Chad, for making these truths clear to me by the words you spoke and the ones you sing.
“Mistakes” by Unspoken