Proverbs 24:16 “For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again, But the wicked stumble in time of calamity.”
It seemed like it took forever for my son to start walking. As he neared his first birthday, most of the babies in the childcare center were already walking. But my son decided to wait. I didn’t understand. He had everything he needed to walk.
Nice strong legs. He was very healthy. I made sure he wore proper hard bottom shoes. He had everything he needed. And yet, he waited.
One day we were home lounging on a Saturday. I was on the couch reading a book and my son was sitting on the floor playing with his toys. Suddenly, he pulled himself up on the table, let go and carefully started taking steps. Excited, I jumped off the couch and hurried over to him. My excitement startled him and he fell on his bottom and started to cry. I quickly comforted him and encouraged him to try again. He got back up, took a few more steps and fell down again, but decided to get back up on his own and try again. This went on a few more times until eventually he was walking, masterfully, on his own.
I think back on that day and think, what if I didn’t allow him to be able to fall. What if I immediately started to yell at him and made him feel like falling was the worst thing ever? What if I decided to give up on him after that first fall, never giving him an opportunity to get back up and try again? I could have tried to justify it by saying that he has no excuse to fall. He’s seen it done, so he should know. He has strong legs and a healthy body, so he’s equipped to walk. He has the tools and support he needs to keep him balanced, so why then, should I allow him to fall? Seems really harsh doesn’t it… until we realize that we do it all the time to one another and to ourselves.
When we expect so much from the people around us and they fall short, it’s easy for us to quickly give up and wash our hands of them. We try to justify it by saying things like… they should know better… don’t they know the word… they go to church every week so there’s no excuse. We don’t give the opportunity to get back up again and get it right, the same opportunity that’s been given to us.
Perhaps your judgement is with yourself. You may have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God and think it’s best to just stay down. You won’t allow yourself to get back up and try again. You try to justify it by saying… I should know better… I know the word of God… I go to church every week and have all the support I need, so there’s no excuse.
God’s word tells us that the righteous man falls seven times and rises again. It didn’t say, the righteous just might fall. The word says that you will fall. You will sin. You will hurt. You will be hurt. But we are called to get back up. We are called to be that loving mother who speaks love and encouragement and hope, and whispers, “get back up and let’s try again until we get this right.”
We are called to bare the cross of Jesus so that we may know its full victory. Just as Jesus defeated the grave and refused to stay down, we have the power to declare the same thing… that we will not stay down. Like Christ, we shall get back up, again and again, and walk fully in victory and restoration.
Heavenly Father, I know I have fallen time and time again, and I thank you for your power and grace toward me to help me to get back up again. God give me the heart to love and forgive so that those around may see You, through me, and grab hold of Your power to get up and try again. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
By: Min. April Carter