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“And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” –James 1:4
Gosh. You read all that Scripture has to say about being perfect, being loving, and acting like Christ. The Words are great. The aspirations are high. But you and I always fall short. We’re always lacking in something. That’s how it feels.
We mess up. We fail.
Whether in our relationships, our attitudes, our work, our hearts, or anything else, it seems we’re always having to “make it right” even when really we haven’t done anything wrong.
Do you know this feeling?
It’s the sense that maybe you ought to apologize, even though they probably didn’t notice. Or maybe that you’ve missed out because of a poopy attitude and now you’ve got to overcompensate. You try to “make it right” just because it’s clear that something that you did or said didn’t have the outcome you expected.
…Didn’t have the outcome you expected. That’s it, isn’t it? That’s a primary cause of our culture of over-apologizing and relativizing until reality is revised to suit the desires of whoever we’re dealing with.
The resulting version of “making it right” tends to have nothing to do with right or wrong after all.
So often when we attempt to make things right, we’re attempting to make things more comfortable or easier. We’re attempting to feel better. We’re not so concerned with the “right” aspect.
That’s a problem.
Instead of trying to get it right by going to the one who makes all things right, we live Romans 10:3,
“Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.”
Believers know the righteous of God deep in their hearts, but we don’t always know it in our lives. We often think that things that are awkward or uncomfortable are wrong. We try to “fix” that which God broke for a purpose. Though there are times when we need to apologize and compromise, there are also many times when that works against the Lord’s will. But it doesn’t feel that way. We often feel that our feelings are the enemies we need to defeat instead of sin.
We know He saved us from sin –but He has also saved us from the need to be comfortable and feel better. Further, He has saved us from having to figure out “good” and “right” for ourselves.
God is the one who determines what “right” ultimately means. Our attempts at “making it right” are often better stated as our attempt to “make right our own.” We don’t have to. We have Jesus. We have the Bible. We have the Holy Spirit.
Yes. We fail. We mess up. We aren’t perfect. Even our best intentions can result in difficultly, mistakes, and pain. But the thing about His righteousness is that it stands in our stead. Jesus is our righteousness, making us faultless in the sight of the one who matters most.
Before we try to correct what we think is wrong in ourselves, our relationships, and more, we must ask if it’s wrong in the sight of God. If it’s not…then we need to let Christ’s righteousness be enough to make discomfort, pain, and mistakes fruitful.
Hands off “making it right” when it isn’t wrong. Instead, let’s try making it His. He can take care of the righteous part.
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