Mistakes, I’ve made a few. Sorry Frank, but I made those mistakes doing things my way and not the right way.
I used to be an athlete.
If you saw me, you’d be able to see my chiselled abs and bulging muscles. Okay, so the bulges are not in my biceps and the chiselled looks have faded into my memory, where they remained exaggerated to this day. After all, I am a storyteller.
At one time I was a ranked tennis player…but only on those hot summer days.
Yet I made mistakes. Yup, I admit that I was not perfect in either my game or my life.
During a tennis match one day, I was having trouble putting the spare ball in my pocket. You see in tennis for some reason players stash a spare ball in their shorts. Weird. When I played hockey, I was never allowed to carry an extra puck. The same happened when I played football. The refs would get really mad if you had your own ball.
This one day I tried to stuff a ball into my pocket and realized I had my shorts on backwards! Rather than keep it quiet, I shouted to my opponent “Hey! I got my shorts on backwards!”
I won that match.
But that was nothing compared to what happened when I played co-ed squash. I arrived late at the court and went into the locker room and hurried to change my clothes. The woman I was playing against was on the court warming up, and I slipped on my shoes and grabbed my racquet, and ran out the door. Just as I was leaving the locker room, I noticed a draft in a place drafts don’t usually go. I looked down, and I forgot to put on my shorts!
This time I didn’t shout out “Hey! I forgot to put on my shorts!”
These are just two of the mistakes I made. You don’t get your nose broken twice without making mistakes.
It’s not that I made them, It’s how I handled them that is important. In the first one, there was little I could do to correct the problem, so I simply carried on with the game. In the second, if I had not corrected the issue, I would probably be either in jail, slapped, or both!
Sometimes we can correct our mistakes. Sometimes we can’t make it right. Imagine if I would have dropped my shorts on the tennis court and put them on the right way. That would have created more problems!
I knew how to handle these two mistakes because I am a wise guy. But there are other mistakes we can make that are not so easy to figure out. Every one of us has a mistake somewhere that haunts us. You know that one time you dropped your guard and did something that hurt other people or had other serious consequences such as losing money or jobs or friends.
These are tough things with which to deal. That is why I am glad I have Jesus. You see, it is hard to forgive yourself and to move on from a bad mistake. Even when others forgive you, it is still hard to do this. Jesus said, though, we are to love others as we love ourselves. So if I forgive Johnny for breaking my favourite tool or Jenny for breaking my heart, I ought to be able to forgive myself when I hurt others. And to even forgive me when I hurt myself.
That is where Jesus helps. Do you know that whenever I ask him to forgive me, he does? Provided I am sorry, of course.
No point trying to trick God into thinking you are sorry when you aren’t. He knows you too well for that.
Take your mistakes that are too tough to handle to him. And take the ones others make as well. Forgiveness is freedom and God loves to set people free.
Don’t get caught with your pants down!