Mistakes Maketh Man.
by Nick Bishop
When Adam and Eve were in the garden of Eden and took that fatal and forbidden bite of the apple, we learn from the book of Genesis that this was the first act of disobedience that brought pain, suffering and death into our world. Ever since then, humans have been living with the consequence of this action called ‘sin’. Before this great fall, there was total harmony in God’s creation. It is thus often said that ‘actions have consequences’, and because of the actions of the first humans, we have been living with this massive misdemenaour and replicating our own sinful lifestyles ever since. It is precisely because of sin, that we are more than flawed creatures. We are capable of great evil.
Apart from deliberate choices that lead us to sin, many people still strive for things that are unrealistic and out of reach, and this can lead to failure. And the things we deem ‘our biggest mistakes,’ can leave us feeling ashamed and embarressed.
It is reckoned that the average American worker makes 118 mistakes a year. Human beings make 3-6 mistakes per hour. Mistakes are made in all walks of life, and they can happen to us all.
We often associate mistakes with our brains making the wrong decision. This is certainly true if the information we receive is incorrect, dubious propaganda, or out of date information. The brain is a fantastic, biological wonder that can overload itself, and though our brain is the finest computer on the planet, it does suffer overload and malfunction. For example, when we have too much information and our brain is trying to process it, this leads to confusion. Confusion, can lead us to make big mistakes. We can pick the wrong job, the wrong partner, the wrong car, the wrong neighbourhood, etc. We then live with the consequences of our mistakes. The larger the mistake, the more likely it will affect the rest of our life, in some way or other. One thing is for sure though, whether big or small, a mistake is a mistake, just the same. Of course, we shouldn’t let Satan off the hook here. The devil delights in our mistakes and actively entices us to make those wrong choices, (though you may not realize at the time), and especially, if it undermines and resists the will of God. Sometimes the advice we are given, though well-intentioned, can lead us to make incorrect decisions.
Hindsight, as they say, is a fantastic thing. There are moments where we wish we could turn back time and put right our mistakes. Of course, what is a ‘wrong’ choice for one person, may not be to another. Sometimes, mistakes can be beneficial in the long term. They can be educational in the fact that we learn from those errors, so that through experience and education, we avoid those same mistakes in the future.
How did Jesus look at sinful choices that people made in his day? Well, we often find in scripture, his answer was to expose it, forgive it and move on. We have the example of Mary Magnalene who was to be stoned for the charge of adultery/prostitution. Jesus stepped into the midst of the crowd and said those famous words that have echoed throughout history: “Let those without sin, cast the first stone”. At this, the crowd knew they had had their hypocrisy called out, with many turning away in shame. Jesus saved this unfortunate woman and forgave her. And though Jesus did not ignore her sin and told her to sin no more, he didn’t leave her with the labels people put on her. Jesus saw how the crowd judged her and that it should not define her, as a human being. Our Lord, could see that she, like all of us, was a flawed individual, and yet, with God’s help, was capable of much more than mere labels the crowd associated her with. If she chose the path of forgiveness and faith in God, Mary could start an entirely new life, fuelled by God’s grace and mercy.
When we realize that no one is perfect and sinful choices and mistakes affect us all, through repentence toward God and faith in Him, we can have a greater peace of mind. Sin is a part of the human condition that Christ died for. So let us remember, that despite our weaknesses, Christ loves us and has proven this, by his death on the cross. So for the Christian, a repentant and meek heart that is full of gratitude for God’s mercy, is to be commended.
Here are some helpful scriptures:
Psalm 37:24: “Though he falls, he shall be cast headlong, the Lord upholds his hand”.
James 3:2: “For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to handle his whole body”.
Isaiah 41:10: “Fear not, for I am with you. I will strengthen you. I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand”.
God bless you,
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