“For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin — because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.” — Romans 6:6-7
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One of the most famous sports commercials ever is Michael Jordan recounting his failures. “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career,” Jordan begins. “I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
Rather than letting his failures and disappointments define him, Jordan used them to fuel his legendary competitive spirit. He was able to accept the reality that he came up short sometimes without letting the low moments impact him moving forward. Jordan did not reach the NBA Finals until his seventh season, but what people remember is his perfect 6-0 record once he got there.
A key aspect of having a strong relationship with Christ is being able to deal with sin in a healthy way. We need to own the mistakes we make and ask for forgiveness while also giving ourselves grace. Striking the right balance between the two can be difficult.
Paul devotes an entire chapter of his letter for the Romans to discussing what it means to be free from sin. Because Christ was crucified, Paul says, we are no longer slaves to sin. That allows us to live in light of the eternal life God offers.
When we fall short, we can go to God confidently knowing Jesus paid for our shortcomings on the cross. We can’t hide our sin from God, though we may want to sometimes. If you ever find yourself feeling ashamed of something you’ve done, remember that Jesus did more than die for our sins; He buried them on the cross with Him.
God wants us to live in the freedom of His grace so we can grow closer to Him. When we get caught up in our sin, it prevents us from having the deep, personal relationship God prizes above all else. The next time you’re tempted to dwell on a mistake or failure, try to leave your sin on the cross and turn your attention to God instead.
— Joshua Doering
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