Break Free (part 4): Get Back Up

Let’s get something clear from the get go: Anyone who begins to follow Jesus will experience waves of joy and peace accompanied with bouts of huge failure and deep grief. It’s just going to happen. Followers of Christ will inevitably fall down and at times it may be a more significant face plant than at any time prior to our spiritual transformation...Period! If you know this going in, you’ll be ready for the fallout and more encouraged to get back up, dust yourself off, and get moving again with God.

One of the most humiliating things that has ever happened in my life, was just after Jesus saved me, gave me a new life, and offered me my first real shot at living. To have God pour his love and forgiveness into my life was awesome, but my personal failure in light of his love made me feel awful and pitiful. I hated how I essentially spit in God’s face after he had done so much in my life. 

Here’s what happened. I was about four weeks into my new life as a Jesus follower in a new town. It was time for me to get some work and I joined a construction crew building a health club. It wasn’t long and I was invited to a party. I thought I could handle it and even share Christ with party goers. Well that was a stupid move! I got sucked into the deep end of the sin I’d been saved from. Within hours I was on a hunt for, believe it or not, the very substance God had set me free from–Cocaine. It got worse. We didn’t find Coke, we could only find Chrystal Methamphetamine. I was in the darkest place I’d ever been and with every snort of the meth I stepped away from light. At this dingy shack of a home, in pitch darkness, I could sense the evil trying to take me out. 

After a long night, God somehow pulled me back to the home of my spiritual mentor. I didn’t want to show my face to a soul. My spirit was crushed, I had utterly and fully failed my God. When I awoke, I truly wanted God to kill me. I wondered, how could God redeem such a loser? But through brutal honesty with a couple people who loved me, time in God’s truth, and hours on my knees, I heard the most loving voice say “get back up”. It was God and he wasn’t condemning me, he was cheering me on. I learned some great lesson that horrible weekend and those lessons keep me moving even today. God redeems our personal failure to his glory and our gain.

What failure in your past do you think is too great for God to forgive? Where have you been stuck and feeling like you’re unredeemable? When was the last time you allowed God to hear you out and fully aired out your dirty laundry with him? I have three simple words for you, Get Back Up! Don’t let evil get the last word in your failures. God has a way of taking our biggest mess-ups and turning them into lessons that will strength us as get back up and get moving again! Let’s go...

Romans 8:28

Today Is Loaded With Potential

Time is always on our side...so don't give it away. Squandered time is more than lost time...it's loss of a precious commodity to help us live in genuine victory...wisdom! Check this out: Moses had learned mega lessons from being stuck in a desert for 40 years. So how insightful and cool that a man who wasn't even going to cross the river into the bodacious land of promise, says..."teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom." But this isn't an anomaly...scripture links time-management almost exclusively to wisdom. Here's one of the anchor thoughts from an early Christ follower: "Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil." So let's put a myth to death right now...Time management isn't a self-help thing...it's a God-help thing! Oh, and time management is not limited to how we live with ourselves...we can "walk in wisdom toward outsiders" by "making the best use of the time." God's passion is to give His kids the inside scoop and the spiritual upper hand in dealing with relationships at all levels. What a golden opportunity that must be seized...right now!

Wisdom is not a mysterious thing...it's the gift of time redeemed. Here's the secret that wise people get: A few minutes of planning and managing the minutes of our day...creates margin, relieves stress and gives us relational freedom. So get after it...find a system or an approach that accounts for your days/hours/minutes...it's God's idea. Plan your time before someone else's plan gobbles up your time. Time-management isn't selfish...it's stewardship. The irony is this...we find more free time when time is accounted for than we ever will "living free with our time". Don't let "evil" snatch another day from your life. Today is loaded with potential...go get every bit of it!

James 4:6, Ps. 90:12, Eph. 5:15-17