Climbing Out Again

Do you ever get stuck in a rut?  I know I do, especially in my walk with God.  I love to study the Bible and pray, but it takes time and concentration — two things I hoard dearly.  A lot of times I find myself having really great devotions for a week or a few days.  I’ll spend chunks of time reading the Bible and taking notes and praying, and I always feel so refreshed and motivated.  Then I get busy or tired and will hardly pray or look at Scripture for a few days.  When I come back I feel like a wreck.

I am something of a perfectionist, and when I mess up in my own eyes, I have trouble forgiving myself.  When I quit devotions, even for a few days, I feel like I have let God down.  I feel like I have to spend time getting over the hump before I can talk to God about myself or ask for His will or pray for others.

This past week was a down week, and last night I couldn’t stand it anymore.  This year I have been getting steadily closer to him, and I really needed to talk to Him.  I talked to Him for about 30 minutes, just expressing my frustration with myself and knowing that I need to just move on, but not without addressing the problem.  I spent a little time praying for someone from church (who I may write about later), but mainly I tried to address this issue which recurs so often.  Then, thinking maybe my problem was forgiving myself, I decided to look up some verses on forgiveness.

One of the first ones I found was 1 John 1:9 —

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

This verse really spoke to me.  I know I need to confess my sins, and I had talked to God about slacking off on my devotions.  But I realized that perhaps I hadn’t formally confessed them.  I also know God forgives me my sins if I ask, but I had forgotten that he also “purify[s] us from all unrighteousness.”  God reminded me that He will purify me.  Not me purifying myself.  He will purify me.  And so I confessed my sin, asked His forgiveness, and claimed that promise.  Mark 11:24 says, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”  I believe that God has forgiven me, that He loves me, and that He will purify me and strengthen my walk with Him.  I know He will help me live for Him every minute and hour of the day.  And that’s a really good feeling.  :)

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