Repent, Restore, Repeat
by: Brian C. Collins
“But God watches over us for spiritual growth and maturity, trying to teach us the necessity for fully trusting Him and coming to the place of complete distrust of ourselves.” A.W. Tozer
As a Christian I can tell you, as most other Christians know, living the Christian life is not easy and filled with endless joyful celebration and financial prosperity. However, it also is not filled with despair and hopelessness. Actually, one thing we can always have as a Christian is hope and the peace of God. Few Christians experience the “peace of God that passes all understanding”, simply because they do not exercise the same faith they used to except Christ as their personal savior. Spiritual maturity, as referred to above by A.W. Tozer, once achieved opens ones eyes to the possibilities through Christ and obedience to His Word.
My thoughts today center around sin in our Christian lives. It is impossible to live life as a lost person and as a child of God without sinning. In Romans 7:18 Paul talks about the battle he has with his flesh and even states that, “For I know in me (that is, my flesh) dwelleth no good thing.” Paul also wrote in Ephesians 6:12 “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
We cannot combat sin, our fleshly desires, supernatural temptation, and earthly media temptation all on our own with our own strength. We also cannot rely only on prayer or just reading our Bibles everyday. Combatting sin and our sinful nature takes diligence and awareness of our surroundings. I Peter 5:8 warns us to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” In Job 1:7 When asked by God where he has been, Satan says, “From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down it. Verse 8 God ask Satan, “Hast thou considered my servant Job.
God will not harm us or allow us to tempted beyond what we can handle, 1 Corinthians 10:13. Somehow, I think we forget that God allows us to be tempted by Satan. In 1 Peter 1:7 explains, “That the trial of your faith, being more precious than of gold that perisheth,” Do you understand that? The trial of our faith is more precious than of gold. Not our faith, our faith is very important and it is the only way we can please God and live a successful Christian life; however, this scripture is telling us that the trial of the faith is more valuable then the faith itself.
Now, obviously, I’m not promoting martyrdom, or self punishment as a way to spirituality. I am simply stating that the hardships, temptations we face each day in our lives are there and allowed to be there to help us mature in Christ, to fully rely on God by faith, and keep pressing “towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14).
We must seriously seek God in prayer each day for aid in our fight against sin and the flesh, we must memorize scripture that is specific to our individual sinful battle, obey God’s Word, be faithful to church (our church family can strengthen us) and we must take extreme measures to avoid the things that can lead us to stumble and fall back into sin. It is a combination of all those things, not just one or two. We must put on the Whole armor of God (Eph 6:11-18).
I wrote all that to get to this point, we cannot just live by 1 John 1:9, and keep living in sin, and wash, rinse, repeat or as titled above, Repent, Restore, Repeat. This type of flagrant disrespect for Christ sacrifice for our sins will soon backfire on rebellious children of God.
Allocating Jesus to a lowly washroom attendant in a high end hotel or restaurant, where the attendant will assist you in washing your hands fixing your appearance and apply some cologne and then just leave Christ there until you need to tidy up again will not do. The Lord Jesus Christ is not our cleaning slave, we are His bond servants, we owe Him our servitude.
An irreverent attitude like that will soon lead to the Lord allowing our hearts to hardened/callous to God’s Word and our ears def to the message of repentance. All to the point to when we reach the bottom of the pit of sin and finally, sincerely, and truly seek restoration; He will forgive us and cleanse us, and “bring us out of the miry clay, and set our feet upon a rock.” (Psalm 40:2) but the damage will have been done.
Yes, God can and will use us for His good work, and it’s never to late to Repent and turn back to God. There will be regrets, and you will recognize the fact that had you turned to Christ sooner you could have done so much more for Him and your heart will ache with the knowledge that you will not have more time to serve Him. For our lives are but a vapor, short, and our debt to Christ eternal.