Death in a Sinful World
How does one recover from a big mistake?
Frances Bridges is a twenty-something freelance journalist who regularly writes about what she’s learned from her own mistakes. For those of us who often feel imprisoned by our mistakes, she lists five points that help her when working to reclaim her life from significant mistakes.
First, keep some perspective. Our mistakes probably seem larger to us than they do to others. Our big mistakes, though they can be serious, are rarely fatal.
Take responsibility. The sooner you own up to the misstep, the sooner you will regain the respect of those affected by it. Denial magnifies the issue in the minds of others.
Forgive yourself. You can’t take the necessary steps to correct the error if you spend all your energy beating yourself up.
Make things right. Accept the consequences for your actions. The short-term pain will result in long-term satisfaction.
And finally, do better. Learn from your mistakes and remember those lessons in the future.
Unfortunately, some mistakes are fatal. So how does one recover from a deadly mistake? There is only one solution for a fatal mistake: resurrection.
When our first parents made that fatal mistake in the Garden of Eden, the Lord revealed the painful solution: the venomous serpent would strike God’s heel, but God in turn would crush the serpent’s head. The poison of our sins that Satan injected into God was fatal, but God rose from the dead to deliver the final blow to the serpent.
When we commit a fatal error (and every sin we commit is deadly) we have only two options: either pay the penalty for that sin by our own eternal death, or look to the Savior and accept God’s death and resurrection on our behalf. Death is a reality in this sinful world. The good news is that eternal death doesn’t have to be our reality.
Connecting: What is the biggest mistake you believe you’ve made in your life? (Don’t feel obligated to share the details.) What is one lesson you’ve learned from this or other big mistakes that has helped you avoid other pitfalls?
Sharing: What do you think was the decisive reason that Adam and Eve fell for the serpent’s temptation?
- Well, the snake ate the fruit and it didn’t kill him, so God must be lying to us
- The fruit sure looks and smells delicious, so God is withholding something good from us
- We’re grown up enough now to make our own decisions, so God doesn’t trust us
- We’re by ourselves here, so God will never know
- We can be like God and know good and evil by eating the fruit, so God is oppressing us by denying our opportunity for advancement
Applying: Do you know anyone who feels utterly defeated by a serious mistake? How can you encourage that person to keep their situation in perspective and move forward in life?