I don’t wake up in the morning and say, “I am going to be irritable and angry today.”
On my list, I never write things like lose your temper, berate your children, kick the dog.
I even know that the fruit of the spirit comes from a vibrant ongoing love relationship with Jesus. I pray earnestly and read my devotion in hopes that I will be the mother I want to be.
So, a few hours later, why do I find myself in a puddle of self-pity- angry and insecure?
Am I just basically a weak and bad person? What am I doing wrong?
Do I need to go into counseling? The answer is “yes” and “no.”
The apostle Peter spoke to his flock and reminded them that since Jesus’s divine power gives us everything we need, we are to “make every effort to add to our faith goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness and love.” (2 Peter 1:3-7)
That sounds pretty good to me.
He continues by telling us that if we are growing in these areas, we will be effective and productive in our homes.
Okay, if I was tested on this- pass/fail, I might pass but just barely… And that’s just on a good day.
So, what is the answer? Peter says that the reason is, “we are nearsighted and blind, forgetting that we have been cleansed from our past sins.” (v.9)
So, what next?
- If we are forgetting salvation, Peter urges us to question whether or not we have actually been forgiven by Christ. Do I truly have a loving relationship with the God who sent His Son to die for me?
- Once that is settled, there are two things that I have been forgetting.
- Not one of my sins is counted against me by God and I am a cherished member of His family. I no longer need the approval of anyone.
- A sign that I am growing in Christ is being able to say to myself, “Cheer up, you are worse than you thought.” You see, as the light of the Holy Spirit dawns, we are able to see more and more of our selfishness and unhealthy desire to be God.
When I am not good, I am forgetting that God loves me. When I have no self-control, I am forgetting that I have been set free from the grip sin has on me.
Isn’t it beautiful that those first century stupid sheep had a shepherd like Peter? He continued, “So I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and are firmly established in the truth you now have. I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live.”
When I remember that I am loved completely, I will not be defensive, bragging, or showing off to get peoples approval. I will not wallow in self-pity feeling unappreciated. I will not feel the need to stuff myself with food or new clothes or things because His love is all I need.
When I remember that I am actually more sinful then I know now, I will not stand in judgment of others. I will not compare myself to the people around me or make negative comments so as to build myself up. I will have compassion when faced with other people’s bad behavior, and will never make people feel like they are being judged by me.
Have you been forgetting? I have. We need many reminders, so let’s stay close to shepherds like Peter and be a shepherd to the other stupid sheep in our households and neighborhoods.