“I was wrong!”

So sure that the course of action was a mistake, I fussed angrily. I predicted that the decision would produce terrible results.  Later I looked at the situation and declared – “I was wrong!”  Wonder of wonder, when I admitted that I had misjudged terribly, I felt great freedom, no longer feeling any need to defend what I realized was entirely wrong.  “I was wrong” – those can be difficult words to say to your spouse, to your child, to yourself, even to God.

Pride is strong, causing us to want to want to ‘be right’ even to the point of being ridiculous sometimes. Confronted with evidence that we need to change our ways, we often dig in, holding an indefensible position. We see that folly so clearly in others and wonder, “why can’t they just admit that they made a mistake?” But we are too often ready to excuse, justify, and rationalize.

The Bible calls it repentance.  Repentance is not just being sorry; it is making a change. Jesus said “Unless you repent, you too will all perish.” (Luke 13:5, NIV)  In the text of the first language of Scripture, the word is one that indicates a complete change of mind, a reversal of the course of action. 

Peter uses it, too. He confronted the people of Jerusalem who had rejected Jesus and called on them to repent. “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus.” (Acts 3:19-20, NIV)  When the Holy Spirit calls on us to turn our hearts towards God, repentance is part of our response of faith. We abandon pride and turn around. Oh what freedom results from genuine repentance.  Peter reminds us that there will be times of refreshing.

Another passage instructs us about the process. It was written by John who was inspired to share it with Christians. Yes, even those who have put faith in Christ need to repent from time to time when convicted by the Spirit. How I love this passage for the rich promise in the words. “If we say we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and refusing to accept the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.

My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if you do sin, there is someone to plead for you before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who pleases God completely.” (1 John 1:8-2:1, NLT)   If we refuse to admit “I was wrong” we are deceived, playing the part of a fool. BUT … “if we confess” we find forgiveness.

Confession is more than regretful words. When we are truly confessing, we humble ourselves to agree with God.  We accept His assessment of what we have done, without fear, without shame.

Yes, friend, the One who knows you best, loves you most. Admitting your darkest secret to Him, actually allowing yourself to feel the weight of guilt, is the first step but not the last.  John says if we keep on making excuses saying that what we have done is ‘normal’ or ‘just being human’  our pride leads us to the greatest folly – calling the Lord of Glory a liar.  

Perhaps you are thinking of some ugly thing in your life, some regrettable action, some attitude you keep carefully concealed. You wonder how you could even speak to God about that thing!  You can because in Christ Jesus we have a most able Advocate in Heaven’s throne room.   “He pleases God completely!”  That is the mystery and wonder of grace. 

Christ Jesus has fully pleased the Father and offers to wrap His righteousness around us, giving us freely what we could never purchase for ourselves.  Find the freedom that comes with true repentance.  The ancient preacher, Ezekiel, speaks of the result of turning to God – “I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.” (Ezekiel 11:19-20, NIV)

Experience the grace, feel His love.
Lay aside pride and agree with God.
Yes, learn to say “I was wrong!”

The word from the Word is a song of David, a beautiful prayer of confession.

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. I trust in you, my God!
Do not let me be disgraced, or let my enemies rejoice in my defeat.
No one who trusts in you will ever be disgraced,
but disgrace comes to those who try to deceive others.

Show me the path where I should walk, O Lord;
point out the right road for me to follow.
Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me.

All day long I put my hope in you.

Remember, O Lord, your unfailing love and compassion,
which you have shown from long ages past.

Forgive the rebellious sins of my youth;
look instead through the eyes of your unfailing love,
for you are merciful, O Lord
.” (Psalm 25:1-7, NLT)   Amen

(Video of this blog at this link)

_______________

Goodness Of God

(Let CeCe Winans lift you into God’s Presence)

I love You Lord
Oh Your mercy never fails me
All my days
I’ve been held in Your hands
From the moment that I wake up
Until I lay my head
I will sing of the goodness of God

All my life You have been faithful
All my life You have been so so good
With every breath that I am able
I will sing of the goodness of God

I love Your voice
You have led me through the fire
In darkest night
You are close like no other
I’ve known You as a father
I’ve known You as a friend
I have lived in the goodness of God

Your goodness is running after
It’s running after me
Your goodness is running after
It’s running after me
With my life laid down
I’m surrendered now
I give You everything
Your goodness is running after
It’s running after me

Ben Fielding | Brian Johnson | Ed Cash | Jason Ingram | Jenn Johnson

© 2018 Capitol CMG Paragon (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing)

SHOUT! Music Publishing Australia (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing)

CCLI License # 810055

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