Proverbs 24:16 for the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity.
Counselors, encouragers, and people who offer care to others often encounter those whose past failures threaten to define them and hinder their development, healing, and sanctification. Our enemy capitalizes on our failures and regrets, pressing home the current influence of what we could have, would have, or should have done, if only we were wiser, more courageous, honest, or godly.
There is, however, an internal posture that is invincible against the pile of regrets and accusations the devil’s crew levels at us. Its basis is the new foundation on which we stand and live: the righteousness of Another, a perfectly righteous and holy Savior, whose righteousness is imparted to us by repentance and faith.
Although the above passage is from the Old Testament, its reference to the “righteous” carries exponential significance in light of the New Covenant. The LORD God clearly defines those who identify with Him as individuals who “keep getting up, keep trying, keep pressing through, seven times over; (7, the perfect number).” It seems that true righteousness inspires perseverance. You may have seen it in your own life…
Imperfection has been infused into our world since the Fall. Our mortal bodies will not in this life cease to be prone to failure, stumbling, and missing the mark, giving plenty of opportunity for regret, dejection, or self-pity. And while genuine mourning, godly sorrow, deep contrition, and pouring out our hearts to Him are blessed and appreciated by our compassionate Lord, He does not leave us to abide in depression or defeat. In fact, He assures us that “All things work together for the good of those who love Him…”
Take note again of the source of your staying power. You are a new creature whose past or present failures cannot define your identity. God is faithful and will inspire and reward your persistence in pressing through even the most difficult challenges and circumstances, past or present. Only believe and press on…He “is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory, with exceeding great joy…” [Jude 1:24]