Do you want to know the crazy thing about life? No one's is perfect! So why do we try so hard to convince ourselves that ours is?? Do we truly believe that our sins are better than another's? I'll tell you one thing, I am not perfect and I am nowhere near it. I sin on a daily basis. I lie, I can be greedy, I gossip, etc. I recently read the book Whiter Than Snow and it changed my entire perspective on who I am as a Christian. I am a sinner. I was born a sinner. And I will continue to sin throughout my entire life. That is the reality of being a human. So as I stated before, why try so hard to convince ourselves and others that we aren't sinners? Every story in the bible gives us examples of redemption. Sinners who were lost, broken down, and then redeemed by God. When you read these stories it is easy to say oh my goodness I would never act like that, or how could he/she do that, don't they know better than to defy God? But these stories are us. The Prodigal Son, King David, Saul, Mary Magdalene, Cain and Abel, Job.
Paul was a persecutor, who vowed to put an end to Christianity. I very often hear stories in this day in age of Christians persecuting other believers of God solely because they feel that their way is the only way. But the truth is, we are all one in Christ. Christ did not persecute, he lead by example with love and patience and others followed suit. In fact, he struck down Saul off his horse asking him "why do you persecute me?". Paul was redeemed by God, and became one of the biggest Christian evangelists of all time.He does not want us to act self-righteous, to persecute, judge, or condemn, we are meant to uplift and show compassion, just as Jesus did.
The prodigal son was full of greed! He left his family, taking his inheritance and spending it all on his wild ways. Now who can relate to that? Greed. We long for worldly things , and crazy lives! But what happens when you waste away all your belongings and get lost in the world? The prodigal son came to his senses, just as we all do. Just as his father welcomed him back with loving arms, our father in heaven does the same for us!
Mary Magdalene was about to be stoned to death for her promiscuous ways and Jesus wrote in the sand "Anyone among you who is without sin be the first to cast a stone" (John 8:7). Do we often find ourselves being judgmental towards someone who's sin differs from ours, as if our sins are better than theirs? I feel like this story is one that everyone can relate to most. It is actually one of my favorite bible verses. Let me just reiterate - WE ARE ALL SINNERS. It is not our place to judge or condemn.
Cain killed his brother Abel out of spite and jealousy when he saw that he was getting more admiration than him. How often do we find ourselves jealous of what others have or the attention that they receive? Although we don't o as far as to commit the act of murder, we make other choices that can put down or hurt another. Just as God reminded Cain, sin is ever present in our lives but it is our job to make sure that we don't indulge in it.
Job had everything in life : wealth, a beautiful family, flourishing farm, ect. He was a good man. He avoided sin as best as he could and shared his abundance with others. But was he only good when everything was right in the world? Did his good fortune make him who he was? Are we more often than not thankful and happier when everything is perfect? When storms come do we fall apart?? Job had a foundation like that spoken in Luke 6:48 " They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock, When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it because it was well built." When the storm came that stripped everything Job had from him, including his family, he held steadfast in his faith and showed enough patience to know God had a plan. A lot of times in our storms, we lose sight of and won't accept God's plan. Life is not always perfect. We need the patience of Job to fully understand God's reasoning behind everything.
Lastly, the story of King David.....God blessed King David abundantly and chose him as a mighty and great King to lead Israel. In gaining so much power, he got entirely lost in the world. He used his power to get whatever he wanted. He saw a women who intrigued him, seduced her even knowing she was a married woman, got her pregnant, had her husband killed in battle and then made her his wife. Now talk about sin. Lust, Adultery. Murder. And when God questioned him about it he was so far into his sins that he didn't even realize the wrong he committed until after it was brought to his attention. The entirety of Psalm 51 is David's plea to God to forgive him, wash him of his sins, and help him live for God. It is such a common occurrence now for families to be destroyed by lust and adultery. It is even more common with people in positions of power. Power is often used to get what you want without caring who is in your path. Could you imagine if we had a God like that? A God who used power instead of love?But God showed mercy on David, just like he will forever show mercy on us.
Although these stories can be extreme at times, isn't it crazy how we can relate them to our own lives today? Self-righteousness, greed, power, lust, promiscuity, impatience, jealousy, being judgmental. These are all things that we struggle with on many occasions! God took these men and women in these stories, broke them down and the prospered them! They were all sinners just as we are. They gave in to temptations, acted selfishly, yet they are some of the most influential people in all of Christianity. So it is important to understand that we are and will never be PERFECT, but luckily our God is merciful and full of compassion. When we become aware of our sinful nature it is easier to do our best each and every day to avoid giving in to temptations.