I watch people. Not in a freaky, stalking sort of way…. but I do. My whole life I’ve been watching people process things and act according to how they feel about themselves. You have too. I look back at my own life with regrets. “If only I had….”. It’s tough to live like that. Does failing make me a failure?
So there was this guy named Saul in the Bible who was trying to stamp out the name of Jesus by violently abusing those who were only speaking about things they had seen and heard in those days. You think you have problems? This guy had problems! On his way to a city called Damascus something very powerful happened that convinced him to become a Christ-follower. He eventually died for what he believed. We know him as the Apostle Paul. He penned a large part of the New Testament.
He had failed. Miserably. But it didn’t stop him. And I think I know why….
We all have illusions. Illusions are dangerous things. How your father treated you affects how you think about you. More accurately how you view yourself through the eyes of your father. Or mother. Or teacher. Or whoever.
It’s too easy to think of myself critically. You too? Now, not everyone is like that. In fact, some people I know could stand to think a little more critically about what they’re doing if they want to avoid disaster in their near future. If you’re like me though, I tend to be the heavy hand when my own review comes due.
I have failed at things. Am I a failure? Like forever?
Sunday school taught me that God is perfect. I believe that today. But what does he expect of me now? Perfection? I don’t think so. He knows me too well for that. Yet he loves me anyways, like a good father loves his children no matter what they do. And he loves me too much to leave me mired in addiction or unfaithfulness or the dark. How then does he move me from point A to point B?
He confronted the illusion he had about how God saw him. God came down to the mess in Paul’s life before Paul could offer him anything. Was he looking for perfection? No! He had addressed that problem already. He was just looking for Paul. He was just looking for me. And he found me.
He’s just looking for you. As you are.