Saturday, February 20, 2016

Just Because You Can Fail Doesn't Mean You Should

There is a term in Silicon Valley called failing fast. When starting up a new business, it is said to embrace failure quickly and move on to find something that works. Somehow in my mind, this translated into thinking that failure is not so bad.

The reality is that failure is really, really bad. Many people experience failure and live to tell about it. It almost becomes a triumphant, coming of age story that glorifies the experience of learning and overcoming. What is often missed is that, even if failure is overcome eventually, it's still an absolutely terrible experience.

I think as Christians we can translate this into the interactions between grace and sin. We know that in Christ we have forgiveness of sins and so we don't have to be enslaved by the fear of judgment. Yet, it's stupid to think that we have licence to sin because of grace. Sin is not only inherently bad, but it will have consequences that will inevitably lead to deep regret and pain. Sure, there is forgiveness through the blood shed by Jesus Christ on the cross, and those who sin but confess and repent in Jesus will not be given the eternal damnation. However, as God disciplines those he loves, he will make sure that his children who sin will learn from it to never take it lightly. In other words, sin will always lead to pain. For those outside of Christ, it will be eternal pain that is due punishment, and for those inside CHrist, it will be pain that sanctifies and redeems God's children. While the pain from sin will be a good kind of pain for those in Christ, it will by no means be an experience that will be deemed desirable by any means.

I'm in a situation right now where I am being disciplined for my sinful, rebellious pattern of living. While God has been showing me that I belong to him in Christ and therefore I have relief, I believe he is intent on making sure that I suffer as a consequence of my sin. Not as equitable punishment to pay for my sin, but as a cleansing blow that sanctifies me and makes me more like him. I wish I didn't have to go through it, and I am deeply regretting my sinfulness. I hope that it will pass soon and I will learn from it well. If you're reading this, I hope you will repent faster than I have, or better yet listen to and apply God's word faithfully. Fear God and all will be well with you. It's the truth.

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