I am So Weak.
I am weak.
I heard a song on the radio today. I sang along as I have a hundred times before, mindlessly (and poorly) mimicking the lead singer. I am sure most of you know the song. It is called “East to West” by Casting Crowns. Based on Psalm 103, (one of my favorite psalms) it touched me to my core. Here is the portion that got me thinking:
I know You’ve cast my sin as far as the east is from the west
And I stand before You now as though I’ve never sinned
But today I feel like I’m just one mistake away from You leaving me this way
Jesus, can You show me just how far the east is from the west
’cause I can’t bear to see the man I’ve been come rising up in me again…
I was touched to the core because I have been struggling against that man.
The man I’ve been.
The man I used to be.
And it feels like that… It feels like I am one sin away from God giving up on me…even though I know better.
The more I mature spiritually the more I am made aware of my sin, of how radically depraved I truly am. The sins I have fought by the grace of God, the ones I think I have put to rest…come rising up again and again, over and over. And I hate the man I used to be, yet he is still there, sinfully and selfishly enticing me with false promises of sin and pleasure…and I am utterly powerless to defeat him on my own. Left to myself I know I would give in, because I want to give in. Does that shock you? It shouldn’t. And if I am honest, it would not be so much giving in as it would be a readily embracing the pleasure of sin. How can I say that? Because I am a sinner. You see, I am not capable in my own strength to fight it so I must rely on His strength and I must focus on Christ alone, trusting that when he said, “it is finished” that it truly was finished for all time. We still struggle. We still sin. But we are forgiven because of Jesus’ work on the cross if we repent and believe.
The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
He will not always chide,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
As a father shows compassion to his children,
so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
For he knows our frame;
he remembers that we are dust.
So stop stressing.
Stop the guilt.
Stop the shame.
Stop beating yourself up.
Forgive yourself….because God does.
It was Tim Keller who said, “When people say, “I know God forgives me, but I can’t forgive myself,” they mean that they have failed an idol, whose approval is more important than God’s.”
If you believe that you are forgiven then believe it! Give it all to Jesus, all of it. The sins you despise, the sins you embrace, the sins you are not even aware of. He will remove all of it from you as far as the east is from the west.
I am weak…but his mercy and grace are so much stronger.
Pray this prayer with me.
O Spirit of God,
Help my infirmities;
When I am pressed down with a load
perplexed and knowing not what to do,
slandered and persecuted,
made to feel the weight of the cross,
help me, I pray thee.
If thou seest in me
any wrong thing encouraged,
any evil desire cherished,
any delight that is not thy delight,
any habit that grieves thee,
any nest of sin in my heart,
then grant me the kiss of thy forgiveness,
and teach my feet to walk the way of
Deliver me from carking care,
and make me a happy, holy person;
Help me to walk the separated life with
firm and brave step,
and to wrestle successfully against weakness;
Teach me to laud, adore, and magnify thee,
with the music of heaven,
And make me a perfume of praiseful gratitude
I do not crouch at thy feet as a slave before a tyrant,
but exult before thee as a son with a father.
Give me power to live as thy child in all my actions,
and to exercise sonship by conquering self.
Preserve me from the intoxication that comes
Sober me when I am glad with a joy that comes
not from thee.
Lead me safely on to the eternal kingdom,
not asking whether the road be rough or smooth.
I request only to see the face of him I love,
to be content with bread to eat,
with raiment to put on,
if I can be brought to thy house in peace.