God Uses Imperfect People

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God Uses Imperfect People

I think if I were God I’d do things differently. Relying on humans seems too risky. Too much can go wrong, seeing as how we mortals seem to make a mess of nearly everything we have a hand in. Especially me. I always manage to mess up. To make the wrong choice, to say the wrong thing. If I were God, I would just use angels to send my messages. Preachers and pastors are imperfect, people get hurt when they make mistakes. Talking donkeys are pretty effective. And, animals do not have the human motives or emotions. Much easier to train them.

God Uses Imperfect People

But God

(I think those are among my favorite words.)

Thankfully for you and me, I am not God. While I’ve read the end of the book (hint: the enemy is defeated!) I do not know the means used to get there. I can also say with a fair amount of certainty that I would have given up on me by now. My mistakes far outweigh any good I’ve done in my life and I seriously do not understand why He hasn’t given up on me yet.

But God is not man. He does not see things the way we do.

If angels do all the work, where is God’s glory? Sure, they come in handy in some situations (like reassuring Joseph that Mary did not have relations with another man) but their purpose is to worship God. Of course, they do as they’re told. Well, there was that one time with Lucifer but he took all the bad eggs with him, so what’s left we’ll call good.

While a talking donkey is super cool, and who would not take notice of that, animals probably are not the best way to bring the message of salvation. After all, not every animal that talks has something good to say (hello, snake in the Garden of Eden).

He Sees the Big Picture

God knows that for some of us, a talking animal or messenger angel would not be what really catches our attention. How much can an animal relate to what I’ve been through? Does an angel really know what it is to struggle with temptation? Of course not. God knows that. He is effective in His strategy, as He knows what works. He knew some of us needed a person who walked where we walk now. We need to hear about Jesus from someone who seemed beyond all hope. The message of love and hope should come from those who felt unloved and hopeless.

He sees those who struggle with their addictions. Fortunately, He knew it would take someone who overcame addiction to bring the message of light to someone swallowed in their darkness.

He saw you. He knew what you needed in that deep, dark moment when all hope seemed lost. The plans He had for you outweighed the mistakes, and He loved you enough to devise a specific plan to call you to His will.

Here’s the thing: if we were perfect, then we would not need a savior. Jesus would not have died, sacrificing His life for all the world. In God’s love, in His strength, through His sacrifice, we are made perfect – one day. One day we will have perfect bodies and will sin no more. There will be no more pain, no addictions to battle, no more demons to torment. But until that day, that glorious day, we have work to do here.

God’s Not Looking for Perfect

We are here on earth, created for a purpose. Our lives should be a light that glorifies The Father day in, and day out. Does that mean you won’t fail? Nope. Does He expect you to get it right every time? Again, nope. He knew you would make mistakes. Knowing each and every flaw, each time you’d fail, every time you would get it wrong. The Father knew all of that, and still, He chose you. He does not need perfect, He needs a willing vessel.

Real talk? He used a prostitute in the lineage of Jesus (Joshua 2, Matthew 1:1-6). Woah. Let that sink in. Why? I surely do not know. I think if I were to present my son to the world I’d want the lineage to say something like he was begat of kings and princes who had kind hearts and ruled their lands with integrity. Certainly would not use a harlot.

David. Oh, King David. A man after God’s own heart, and yet you just couldn’t stay away from the ladies, could you? And look what happened? Your son was in even worse shape than you! And yet, the Messiah came from your tribe.

Peter. Hot headed, potty mouth Peter. You followed Jesus, cut a soldier’s ear off for Him, and then denied him. Three times. And cursed! But what is said of you later on? People brought their sick into the streets so that your SHADOW could fall on them (Acts 5:15)? I don’t know about you, but no one has cared about my shadow. Ever.

Countless times in the Bible we see imperfect people, used of God, to bring about His perfect will.

He Just Needs Obedience

Rahab knew the God the two men served was mighty, powerful, and greater than anything she had ever experienced before. And while she did not know Jesus would be a descendant of hers, she knew following God made more sense than anything else in her life.

David was not great with the whole monogamy thing, and he failed God all the time. But what made David different was he did not make excuses for his behavior, and constantly prayed and asked God for help. He knew he was not perfect, but he also knew he needed to obey God. Even if he messed up a time or two.

Peter certainly was not perfect, but he deeply loved Jesus. Thankfully, our love for Jesus goes a long way. And when we serve Him and obey, He uses us in mighty ways.

1 Samuel 15:22 says obedience is better than sacrifice. Pretty simple, straightforward. We are better off obeying God, than trying to sacrifice. He uses the willing heart, the obedient vessel, to bring about His will. I have yet to find a verse that says we are commanded to be perfect.

You know what this means to me? There’s hope. Hope for me. An imperfect, broken, selfish person who thinks everything should be done my way all the time. Just being honest here, y’all, no need me acting like I have it figured out. And, let’s be honest, you’ve tried to tell God how to do something a time or two. Am I right?

Grace {for imperfect me and you}

I think this means we can extend a little grace to those around us. To the person on the church pew beside me who messes up still, I’m sorry for thinking I’m better than you and somehow holier because your sin seems worse than mine.

To the person so broken you do not know how to have a relationship with those around you, I’m sorry for forgetting what broken feels like, and thinking you should just move beyond your past when it took me 25 years to move past mine.

The pastor who sometimes lets his flesh get in the way of a message, I’m sorry for forgetting that you’re human, too. For putting you so high on a pedestal and thinking you’re not supposed to make mistakes. I’ll try praying for you rather than passing judgment.

It is my prayer that I learn to obey God rather than take matters into my own hands. I pray for an obedient heart, one that learns to love those around me and to not forget where God brought me from. A heart thankful for Jesus, and who never forgets that I am imperfect being used by a perfect God who loves me.

God Uses Imperfect People

June 7, 2017
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