I can’t imagine anything worse than being called a hypocrite: “a person who feigns some desirable or publicly approved attitude, especially one whose private life, opinions, or statements belie his or her public statements.” People used to joke about moms who would holler at their children but, when the phone would ring, the tone of voice quickly changed as she answered, “Hello.” I’ve been in ministry for over 25 years, and I remind myself often that, if I am not living what I preach, I should not be preaching.
This does not mean I never have a bad day. I can become frustrated, overwhelmed, stressed, etc. but I work to overcome so I can walk through those times in a way that honors God. When I fail and I know I have grieved my Father, I ask His forgiveness and His help to do better.
I don’t want anyone to ever look at me and see another Christian who has failed. I want them to see that God is real and at work in the lives of His imperfect people. Without Him, I am not a blessing to anyone but, with Him, there is no end to the ways He can use me if I will allow Him to do so.
If you are struggling to live Godly in Christ Jesus, the answer is not to give up. Continue to draw near to God, ask for His help to become the person you know you need to be. If you have been unkind to others, tell them you know you were wrong. It may take them time to forgive you but at least you will be taking the first step to a victorious walk with Christ. Habits are hard to break so you may find yourself repeating the sin you’ve repented of. Every time, as soon as you realize you’ve done it again, go to God and ask His forgiveness and His help to say No to those things. Whether anger, pride, selfishness, lust–whatever the sin–God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. I, for one, am very grateful that He is continuing the work that He began in me. May I ever praise Him for it.