Yesterday, was a powerful day in the life of our church family. The worship service was packed. The Holy Spirit was moving. The worship was awesome. The message that God laid on my heart to preach was spot on. I just love days like that.
So, here is the gist of the sermon. I was preaching on the comeback story of David. David was a man who sought after God’s heart, but he was also a man who failed many times. One of the most notable of his failures is that of seducing and sleeping with a married woman – Bathsheba. Not only did he sleep with her. He also got her pregnant and had her husband killed. It was a colossal failure in David’s life both personally and spiritually. One that seems impossible to ever overcome.
That is the part of David’s story that we all can relate to. Sure we may never have slept with a married person. Sure we may never have killed anyone. However, we’ve all messed up. We’ve all train wrecked some moments of our lives. It is in these moments that we wonder if we will ever comeback to the way things were before. Here’s the good news – God specializes in comebacks. It’s His thing.
So, how did David comeback from failure? How do we come back from failure?
In yesterday’s message we discovered in Psalm 51 (which David wrote after this series of failures) that to move forward after failure we’ve got to takes the steps of repentance. We actually went on to look at these steps. Here they are in quick summary.
Step #1 – Cry Out For Mercy
This is the place where you acknowledge two things that all of us have to come to grips with on a daily basis. First, you’ve messed up. Second, God is the only one who can help. These two things are essential for walking the road of repentance. Without these realities we just keeping stacking up the sin and failure.
Step #2 – Acknowledge Your Sin
This is a tough step but is so crucial. It is more than just admitting your’ve messed up. It is acknowledging the true depth and impact of your sin. The truth is that real repentance doesn’t take place until we come face to face with the fact that our sin has broken God’s heart. It is not enough to see how it hurts us. We will only move forward after failure when we see how our sin has hurt God.
Step #3 – Cleanse Your Soul
Sin has residue. It is like Mexican food. It tastes good when you are eating in the restaurant, but after you leave you still smell like you are sitting there. That is why as part of repentance we have to join God in the process of cleansing our soul from the residue of sin. This is the step of repentance that very few folks take, but it is so necessary for a full comeback from failure.
Step #4 – Keep Walking With God
Our tendency as humans is to go back to business as usual once thing are a little better. We do this with God. After things are a little better, we fall back into not spending time in prayer and in God’s Word. We go back to the very things that got us in the mess in the first place. It’s at this point that we have to double down and keep walking with God. This is part of repentance.
Of course there was a lot more to the message. You can check out our church website on Wednesday for a copy of the message. If you are in the midst of a failure of your own creation, I want to encourage you get on the road to repentance. Just take it one step at a time. God will do the rest. If you will walk that road, your comeback is just around the corner.