The God of Another Chance

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The God of Another Chance
It’s great to be back from vacation! I appreciate Chip Dean preaching for me and doing the blog post last week while I was away. This week, we will pick back up on the life of Samson. Samson was strong but he had weaknesses. We all do. His struggle started early and it was something he battled his whole life. Like Samson, if you have messed up and made mistakes God will give you another chance…

To Overcome Bad Habits
Judges 16:1 says, “Now Samson went to Gaza and saw a harlot there, and went in to her.” Samson keeps going in the wrong direction, into the enemy’s territory. His first wife was a woman he knew he shouldn’t be with. Samson’s problems started long before Delilah! He keeps making the same mistakes over and over again.

To Overcome Bad Company
“Afterward it happened that he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah” (Judges 16:4). Delilah was devoted to his downfall. She seduced him and brought him low. Are you in an unhealthy relationship? Friends are like buttons on an elevator; they take you up or they take you down!

The devil has strategically hired someone to be your hit man or hit woman. Delilah never drifts into your life. She is sent to blind and bind you, to keep you from doing what you were called of God to do. Delilah’s come in all shapes and sizes. What is your Delilah? You may be playing games with God, but the devil is not playing games with you. He is committed to your failure.

To Overcome Bad Judgement
Delilah “pestered” and “pressed” Samson so that “his soul was vexed to death” (Judges 16:16). She was trying to expose his secret. He should have run right then, instead, he told her all his heart (Judges 16:17). He told her his secrets. Samson had spiritual gifts but he lacked self-control. Giftedness is no substitute for godliness. Guard your heart! His talent took him where his character could not keep him.

Because of his choices, Judges 16:20 says that “he did not know that the Lord had departed from him.” These are certainly some of the saddest words in the Bible. He is not what he used to be. He cannot do what he used to do. He did not even know the anointing was gone. What have you lost because of sin?

To Overcome Bad Situations
Samson ends up blind, in prison, with the Philistines having him “perform” for them (Judges 16:23). They are laughing at him, mocking him. Samson made a joke of sin and sin made a joke of Samson! Is that the way you want to be remembered? Are you in a prison of your own making? Do you feel trapped? What is it that you can’t stop doing? Where is it you can’t stop going? Are you grinding at the treadmill of sin?

This does not have to be the end of your story. “Samson called to the Lord, saying, ‘O Lord God, remember me, I pray’” (Judges 16:28). God heard his cry and gave Samson more victories in the end than in the beginning. He can do the same for you. You may have fallen, but you are still a child of God. Jesus sets the captives free! God is giving you another chance.

Last week, Tammy and I saw the devastation of the Tennessee wildfires that killed 14, injured 134, and burned 1600 structures. Nothing is left but foundations where homes once stood. However, all over that mountain, in the black ashes, is the greenest grass you have ever seen! New growth! God gives beauty for ashes, strength for fear, gladness for mourning, peace for despair. The fire that the enemy meant to burn you is producing new growth in you! Cry out to the Lord. He is the God of another chance.

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