Have you ever felt disqualified from serving God because of the mistakes that you have made? Our Voice Sherea expresses the gracious heart of God towards us through poetry.
Picture a busy restaurant with customers waiting to be seated, and with people laughing, eating, and drinking. The food is delicious and the conversation is good. Suddenly a waitress, with a tray full of just prepared plates and clientele that are eagerly anticipating their meals, trips and spills food all over the floor. Everything stops, with the only remaining sound being the echoes of the plates and glasses that just crashed to the ground. Conversations, eating, and drinking cease while the pleasant faces of people enjoying a night out turn into shocked stares of disbelief.
Immediately she becomes embarrassed. As she tries to recover from the accident, thoughts race through her mind. What will her guests think? Will they be afraid that she will mess up again and spill food on them? Will the other servers be afraid to ask her for help? What will happen to that raise she requested from her boss? When customers come back will they say, “No, not that section please, that girl made a mess the last time we were here.” And worse of all, because of what happened, would she now be disqualified from serving?
Well let me say that is the real world, but in God’s world he gives us room to make mistakes, even when the whole world stares in disbelief as we make a complete mess out of our lives. We lose friends, we lose support, and people are afraid to trust us again wondering if we will mess up like the last time.
God on the other hand sees our messes as opportunities to show off his grace. He rushes over with his towels of comfort and encouragement, his bleach of righteousness, and his sanitizer of love and protection. And as we are still trying to clean things up ourselves he replies “ What mess? I don’t see a mess. I don’t even remember a mess. Now go in the back, wash up, change your clothes, and get back out there and keep serving.” And best of all, because of what happened, we are now even more qualified for service because we are a testament of his grace.
Messy, Messy Spirituality
Does your so-called holy degree
Also give you a license to condemn me?
Yes, it’s true;
out of my life I’ve made a mess
With every tribulation
I’ve failed at the test
Having to start all over again
only to confess
That once again I have sinned…
Will I ever live like I’m blessed?
While worldly peers
I’ve tried to impress, Nevertheless
God has come to rescue me with his love
And cleanse me from all unrighteousness…
Blind eyes can’t see that God is constantly changing me,
Equipping me for the path he’s getting ready to take me.
See I messed up, I made a mistake, I admit that I’ve sinned.
But don’t keep denying me and disqualifying me
Cause God has redeemed my sin.
But it’s this Messy, Messy Spirituality
That’s trying to convince me – and you – that I’m not worthy
To receive the riches that were promised to me
Riches passed on by my Father
Who in his hands holds eternity!
Now let’s be truthful,
I am messed up now
and was messed up then
That’s why Jesus took my place and replaced his love on the cross for my sin
So when God hung his head, shed blood and died on Calvary
Are you saying he just died for you?
And his blood wasn’t enough to cover me?
Oh, ok, now I see…
It’s this Messy, Messy Spirituality
trying to convince me
That living for Christ ain’t easy
See, sometimes I gotta roll up my sleeves and let my elbows get greasy
Cause my salvation ain’t just for me
But so I can preach to the whole world around me
That the key to not tripping about this mess
Is to understand that with this physical life comes enduring spiritual tests
And sometimes I may pass with flying colors
But at other times I may fall,
But that’s no different than any other
We all have come short at one time or another
So I’ve learned that when I’m up
I don’t give up on my brother.
We all make mistakes, some publicly some privately
But God gave me grace, so I can acknowledge my sin,
Repent and He can restore me
I let others in on the truth so they can see His grace
Not so the whole world would be free to condemn me.
Please understand that I’m not justifying my mess
Or putting the focus on somebody else
I’m just saying I made a mistake and God dealt with me
And I’m going to make more mistakes – but not intentionally
Every situation may not be pretty
So I need you to consistently pray that I will be
Always on a journey to where God is taking me
What you need to comprehend
Is that God had my back and he paid for my sins,
And not just for some, but the full amount
So when other folks said I was messed up,
God replied, “No my child, that mess don’t count.”
Image Credit: Cesar Poyatos/flickr