We are but human, therefore, we all make mistakes. No one is perfect. When it is our fault, we are often weighed down with self-condemnation. Actually, most friends I talk to struggle with feeling badly about themselves. You probably relate with this.
Here is what happens. You see one of your weaknesses and probably compare yourself with others who don’t seem to have your weak spots. Then you begin sliding down into deep sadness, discouragement, depression, guilt and shame.
Usually someone comes to you and just say, “Hey, come out of it! You are not trying harder.” Or someone may just say, “Stop it!” expecting that some kind of magic will happen. I don’t know about you but this doesn’t work in the long term.
The Bible says: “The righteous one falls seven times and rises again, but the foolish fall and do not get back up” (Proverbs 24:16). Usually in the scriptures, when the word “seven” is used, it shows that it takes time. What this verse is telling us is that godly maturity takes time. In effect it tells us that when we fall down, God is there for us to help us back to our feet. It is saying that we need to be patient with ourselves. It takes time to learn to walk in Godly wisdom. God is patient with us. He knows we are human. Just keep looking to God because he is always there for us, ready to pick us up. You probably remember the story of Peter who got distracted by the raging waves while walking on water and sank. Jesus was there with him to pick him up.
Are you feeling down and discouraged? God is there for you.
As I look at my own life, I have learned that the way to not be discouraged by my faults is to look to the loving and gracious Jesus Christ. Jesus is the perfect representation of God. God is love. He is relational and desires us with his perfect love.
Do you know what happens when we get stuck in our discouragements? When we dwell in our weaknesses and fault; when we disparage ourselves; we are actually giving ourselves over to pride. We want to be approved of and even admired, and so we’re punishing ourselves for not measuring up. We put value in what we can do, in what we possess or have and in what people say about us. But our true value does not come from these. Our value and identity come from Jesus Christ.
Are you discouraged? Then focus on Jesus. Worship God. When we do this, we step out of our limited selfish kingdom into the glorious spacious Kingdom of God.
I do believe discouragement is not the fruit of humility, but of pride.
When we stumble or even fall, let us rise and run again – and again! All our faults and falls can be useful if they strip us of the disastrous confidence in ourselves. God’s grace takes over. His mercy endures.
Don’t be discouraged by your faults. It is never God’s desire that we dwell on them. Instead, God wants us to be aware of His grace and His strength. In Him is victory (1 Corinthians 15:57). In Him there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1). Such is the God who cares for us.