Overcoming Suffering: From Our Mistakes
In this broken world, suffering is commonplace. If you have lived life for any length of time, you have experienced suffering. What are the reasons for suffering? Here are some of the reasons we have already covered: we live in a broken creation, with fallen bodies, and people’s selfishness causes them to hurt one another.
We can also experience suffering from our personal mistakes. Sometimes we just make stupid mistakes and suffer accordingly.
I don’t know about you, but there have been times when I have made some really stupid decisions. Uninformed. Selfish. Hasty. Emotional. Not led by the Spirit of God. Mistakes made by never asking God for counsel.
What do we do when this happens?
First, confess to God when you experience conviction from the Holy Spirit. Admit your fallen nature and be honest about your mistakes. Remind yourself that you have been redeemed as a child of God and called to live differently than the world says to live.
Secondly, ask God for wisdom to avoid making the same foolish mistake in the future. Don’t lean on your own understanding. Proverbs 3:5-6 says that as we trust in the Lord and not on our own understanding, he will make all of our paths straight.
Finally, repent. The simple way to define what it looks like to repent is, “Stop it!” But there’s more. You also turn away from bad behavior and turn toward a behavior that produces life. Your mind is renewed and you become transformed, desiring to please God at all costs (Romans 12:2).
This is God’s pathway to freedom and making this world a better place in which to live.