Sunday, November 2, 2008

Are You Good Enough

Are You Good Enough
Oct 20, 2008
Romans 8:30 "...those he called, he also justified..."

When asked the question, "Are you good enough?" your mind quickly summarizes all the bad things you've ever done in your life and flashes all your failures in front of you. You know the answer to the question will be "No," but you still justify your answer and make excuses in order to get rid of that guilty feeling. So confident now in your answer, after making yourself feel better with deceit, you hope you will never be called forward or be challenged for excellence. You slouch back down in your chair and hide from being called out, knowing that you're not good enough so you don't have to try. Your past has dictated your future, and there is no longer hope of you changing the world. This thought pattern is ingrained into our lives of insecurities and laziness.

There was a man of God who committed more atrocities than you could imagine. He failed in life more than you could ever imagine. He certainly wasn't good enough; he was the scum of the earth. But that did not preclude him from being called forward, challenged for excellence, or asked to get over the insecurities of his failures. He was the apostle, Paul. Recall that he lived at the exact same time as Jesus and that he was determined to stop Jesus' ministry here on earth. Paul persecuted Christians and was responsible for more murders than anyone on death row here in America today. Paul's murders were probably the worst sins any Bible hero ever committed, as they were in direct rebellion against Christ. Paul was even the one given credit for stoning Stephen, a great man of God from the early church.

But all those sins and failures did not stop God from changing Paul's life and using Him in a mighty way to impact the entire world. Paul allowed the Lord to take his failures and wipe them away, enabling Paul to become the most effective Christian and missionary the world has ever seen. Despite Paul's failures and the atrocities of his past, the Lord was able to use him; Paul is given credit for more contributions to our Bible than any other human being. In God's eyes, the more you've failed in your past, the more God can use you in your future.

So, if you've decided that a life of failure precludes you from doing anything great in this world, think again. The Lord doesn't care how many "D's" you got on your report card, or how many STD's you have, or how many DUI's you have. He cares about using you and your future. So the next time you're asked the question, "Are you good enough?" you can re-write the question. The question now becomes, "Do I have what it takes to move forward, beyond my failures?" The question now becomes, "Am I willing to move past my past and change the world?"

You may, at times, begin to feel inadequate again, but that is OK. You'll feel like a wild mustang among thoroughbred horses. But you'll need to remember, it's not about your past or lineage, it's about how fast you can run. And if you don't have a past full of failures and you haven't made an effort to impact the world, then Christ would say to you that you are no better than those Pharisees, whom He called white washed sepulchres. Look it up.

1. Do you remind yourself of your failures and forget about doing great things?
2. What part of your past do you need to get over in order to do those things?
3. Ask God to show you the great things He needs for you to do.

Additional Scriptures for Study: Matt 23, Rom 3:24-28, Rom 5:1, James 2:18-26

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