by Rick Warren — February 2, 2021
From When You’re Hoping for a Miracle
“If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me.”
Jeremiah 15:19 (NLT)
So, what should you do when you sin? One word: Return! Come back to Christ. It’s that simple.
Isaiah 1:18 says, “No matter how deep the stain of your sins, I can take it out and make you as clean as freshly fallen snow” (TLB).
On the night Jesus was arrested, his disciple Peter denied knowing and following Jesus three times. If ever there were a sin you’d think was unforgivable, it would be that! But Jesus knew Peter would deny him, and he knew Peter would come back to him. In fact, before it even happened, Jesus said to Peter in the Upper Room, “I have pleaded in prayer for you that your faith should not completely fail. So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen and build up the faith of your brothers” (Luke 22:32 TLB).
Jesus knew Peter’s ministry would be more effective after his denial than it was before. And, sure enough, it was! Peter wrote the two books of the Bible that we call 1 Peter and 2 Peter. Then he shared his memoirs with a relative, and that’s the gospel of Mark.
You may think God has forgotten you. He hasn’t. The Good Shepherd leaves the 99 sheep to go after the one. He knows how you’ve fallen away. Maybe it happened in one giant step, or perhaps it was a series of small, tiny steps. Whatever it was, you’re not as close to Christ as you used to be.
You need to pray what David prayed when he came back to God after committing adultery. He said, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation” (Psalm 51:12 NLT). David did not have to pray, “God, restore to me my salvation,” because he hadn’t lost his salvation. He had lost the joy.
Why not come home to Christ today?