Surely God wants nothing to do with me.  Surely He is so disappointed in all my failures that He is given up on me.  Surely He sees my continuous failed efforts to get myself together – only to have to continuously start over, sometimes from 3 steps back.  Surely He can’t forgive me.  Surely He doesn’t want me for His daughter.  Surely He would never pursue my heart or chase after me to have a relationship with Him.  Surely He is not jealous for me.  Surely I don’t deserve His love, mercy, and goodness. 

Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life…Surely that wasn’t meant for me.

David wrote Psalm 23 when he was older, looking back on his life.  If you have read anything at all about David, you must have read about his many failures as well as his victories.  Yes, he was the boy who killed Goliath.  Yes, he was the shepherd boy who became a king. Yes, he was a man after God’s own heart.  But he was also the man who took another man’s wife, Bathsheba, while he was off fighting a war.  He was also the man that had her husband killed. He was also the man who ignored the rape of his daughter by her brother, his own son. How do you get past these kinds of failures in life and be able to testify that you know surely God’s goodness and mercy has and will follow you all the days of your life?

The answer is that David believed something that we sometimes have a hard time believing.  He knew that he was forgiven, set free, and redeemed.  When he looked back at his life, David didn’t see his sin. He saw the goodness of God, over and over again in his life.  He didn’t see the shame, the guilt, and the failures.  Every wrong thing in his past was covered by the goodness and mercy of God.  He knew that he had lived in the goodness of God, and there was more to come. When we ask for forgiveness, God forgives us. And when He looks back on our lives, He doesn’t see the sin that He has forgiven. He doesn’t want us to live in that bondage. He freed us so He wants us to live free in His goodness.

You don’t have to live with shame and guilt following you, surrounding you, and suffocating you.  The lies of Satan will keep you from believing what David believed – that you are redeemed, and that God plans for goodness and mercy for you all the days of your life. The lens of shame and guilt cannot see the goodness of God in your life. Yes, it was meant for you.

Surely God does want everything to do with you.  Surely He will pick you up every time you fail so you can try again.  Surely He will forgive you if you ask.  Surely He does want you for His daughter.  Surely He chases after you.  Surely He is jealous for you.  Surely you deserve His love, mercy, and goodness. 
Surely goodness and mercy will follow you all the days of your life… Surely that was meant for you because your Heavenly Father loves you.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 23:6

By Lara Cook

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