Many times I catch myself doing something that I know is wrong, but I do it anyway. Why is this? For example, one time I was shopping in a grocery store. A man dressed in black leather, tattoos and piercings everywhere was coming toward me. He had a mean look on his face and I was thinking, “oh my goodness, I hope he does not say something mean to me”! He walked right up to me, smiled and said, “God bless you my sister!” You talk about someone who was floored!!! It took me a second or two to get my thoughts together, but I smiled back and said, “God bless you too”.
What did I do wrong? I had already judged this man before I even spoke to him! I already had my mind made up that he was mean and was going to say something mean to me! My gosh, I know what God’s word says about judging people. “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. 2 For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.” Matt 7:1-2 NLT Judging is not something I am supposed to do. I felt so bad and I asked God to forgive me because I knew in my spirit that it was wrong.
When I left the store, the same man I had judged was parked right next to me! I knew I had to do the right thing and apologize to him. I said, “sir, I need to apologize to you. When I first saw you I thought you were mean and would say something mean to me. I’m sorry for judging you. I hope that you can forgive me”. (was this easy for me to do, no, but I knew I had to do it). He just smiled at me and said, “miss, that is all right, it happens all the time. The old me would have called you a really nasty name and I probably would have cussed you out. But, the grace of God has changed me. I am no longer that person. Now I greet everyone with the love of Christ no matter who they are or if they like it or not”. Then he gave me a hug and said, “I know it took a lot for you to come and apologize to me, but I am glad that you listened to God and did it. You are truly a beautiful person”.
I said, “good-bye and God bless” and he said the same too. But, he gave me a scripture. He said, “we try to do the right thing, but we end up doing the wrong thing, you know. I am guilty of this too. But we can thank God for His grace and mercy to forgive us. You are trying to do what is right, I can tell. Keep it up. When you fall, Jesus will be there to lift you up”. He smiled and winked at me and left.
The scripture he gave me was, “15 I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. 16 But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. 17 So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.18 And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. 19 I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. 20 But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.21 I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. 22 I love God’s law with all my heart. 23 But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. 24 Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin. ( Romans 7:15-25).
God knows that we try our best to do what is right. As long as we are in this earthly body there will be a fight between good and evil raging within us and God knows this too. WE have to keep fighting the “good fight of faith” and keep “pressing on” to do what is good. . Keep striving to do what is right. Don’t be upset when you fall. Jesus is right there to pick you so you can continue your journey.