I began by explaining just how hearing the words "I'm so disappointed in you" coming from the mouth from someone you are very close to or admire highly could arguably be one of the most devastating things you could ever hear and endure. However, living a life in the fear of disappointed God isn't living the life God wants you to have. God didn't free you from being enslaved by sin to go and fall into slavery to fear! The crazy thing about God, is that you're not going to surprise Him or disappoint Him. David writes in Psalm 139:
“O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord. You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand! I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence! If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the grave, you are there. If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me. I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light around me to become night—but even in darkness I cannot hide from you. To you the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to you.” Psalm 139.1-12 (NLT)
God knows everything, He sees everything, and there is no where that you're going to go that He won't be there too. I mentioned earlier that living a life of constant fear of disappointing God isn't the life that Jesus came to give us. Jesus said:
“Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep.” John 10.9-11
Living a life where you're constantly looking over your shoulder to see if God saw you slip up and fall isn't a life of faith, it's a life of fear and bondage. Jesus came, not to leave you in bondage to fear and sin as you already were, but to free you and give you the opportunity for a rich and satisfying life! Paul describes just how powerful a life of faith is:
“But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him without keeping the requirements of the law, as was promised in the writings of Moses and the prophets long ago. We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.” Romans 3.21-26
No one is going to get to heaven because they got it right. The ONLY reason someone will get to heaven one day is because Jesus got it right, and He's got our back if we only allow Him to, by giving over to Him control of our lives. But even in this, we don't become mindless zombies or robots, instead we become coworkers with Christ, He allows us to continue and work with Him in what He's doing! We walk on the path of life, and if we happen to stumble and fall, we need not fear because grace is the net that's there to catch us and lift us back up again! There were millions of people who lived and sinned before we were even born. Even if God were restricted by time (which He's not), He's seen these sins before. People today are falling into the same trap that our forefathers did thousands of years ago. When Jesus came to pay for our sins in order to redeem us, He did so once, for all!
One interesting example of Jesus not showing disappointment in our failures, is His handling of Simon Peter.
“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift each of you like wheat. But I have pleaded in prayer for you, Simon, that your faith should not fail. So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen your brothers.” Peter said, “Lord, I am ready to go to prison with you, and even to die with you.” But Jesus said, “Peter, let me tell you something. Before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me.” Luke 22.31-34
Did you catch that? Jesus knew exactly what Peter was going to do, and He wanted him anyway! If Jesus still wanted Peter even though He knew he was going to deny Him, what does that tell you? God knows your very thoughts. He doesn’t have to wait for you to speak them aloud for Him to find out what you were thinking, and yet even when you’re thinking the darkest of thoughts, He wants you anyway! That’s what true love is. That’s what perfect love is. That’s what true, perfect, unconditional love is. John explains to us:
“So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.” 1 John 4.16-18
Let go of your fear of disappointment and allow God’s love to be perfected in you! It’s truly liberating! It relieves so much unneeded stress in your life, and grows your faith in a way you couldn’t believe.
This week is going to be a special week that the CSF Leadership Team has planned out, so I'm not preaching this week. I'm looking forward to experiencing what they are putting together and look forward to updating you on how it goes! =) Thanks for reading!!!