“I am sure of this, that he who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6 CSB
This verse makes my heart skip a beat. How the Lord loves us, so much so, He won’t let us stay as we are, AND He won’t stop. That is what this verse says to me. No matter how many times I mess up, no matter how many times I fall off the narrow path, He is there. He doesn’t give up on me. He knows where we are headed and He is going to get us there. No matter how bad I think I am, was or will be, it does not deter Him one bit. He still has a plan for me and He is working it out.
This past week I’ve had several different conversations with friends about the past, specifically sins of the past. I’ve been thinking about the mistakes I made in my life, how they changed me, how I’ve grown from them. My life is so different from where I was 30 years ago, sometimes I don’t even know who I am. It seems to have changed more in the last 7 years than any other time. I find the person who brings my past up the most to me is me. I’m the one who continues to condemn myself for those mistakes. God doesn’t. Some people do, but most don’t. It’s me that I have to forgive most sometimes.
It works the same way for others. When people start following Jesus, they are acknowledging that they are sinners. That they need Him to make them whole. And when that happens there will be change. It won’t happen overnight, it will be day by day, but there will be change. They won’t be the same person they once were. God will be working on them, just like He says He will. They will struggle with forgiving themselves for their pasts, just like we struggle with ours. If we’ll look close enough, we’ll see it’s true.
The key to both of these perspectives is that God started a good work in me. He started a good work in you. He has started a good work in us, and He’s not stopping. God is the one doing the work, not us. It is by getting to know Him better that you will change. As you take small steps of faith and unveil the richness of God’s glory, you will change. Each day you make time for Him, interact with Him, trust Him, you will change. Even in the times when it doesn’t feel like God is doing anything, those are the times He’s probably doing the most. And He doesn’t need your help doing it. God has started a good work, and He will see it through to completion.