Question:

My question is how do you be obedient? It's like I want to do the right thing and I'm aware of what I'm doing wrong and have done wrong in the past, but I'm scared that I'm going to fail in doing the right thing in the future. I also feel like a failure in general; like I've just messed up so much that I should just die. I feel like I'm the seed that gets thrown on the rock and sprouts up real quick, but then dies just as fast. I know God's real. I'm aware of what should be done and what not to do. I just don't think I can do it because I've already messed up a billion times. I want to be faithful, but I'm just afraid that my commitments are empty and I don't know how to follow through.


Answer:

So Satan is going to win your soul because you lack courage? Courage isn't a lack of fear; it is the drive to continue doing what needs to be done despite the fear. That is why the cowardly are among those who end up in hell (Revelation 21:8).

It might seem strange, but I can guarantee that if you commit yourself to obeying Christ that you are going to fail. It isn't because you aren't able to do it; it is because all Christians mess things up at times. "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us" (I John 1:8-10). The difference between the child of God and the child of Satan isn't whether they sin, but what they do in response to sin. A child of God will pick himself up, dust himself off, and try again because it isn't in his nature to stay in sin. The child of Satan doesn't do anything about his sins because he doesn't care. He might do righteous things at times, but he doesn't stay in righteousness because it isn't a part of his nature.

Part of what discourages people is getting overwhelmed with all the things that need to change. Pick one thing that you know you aren't doing right and then focus on straightening that out. As you make progress on that issue, pick another to work on. Just focus on the next step that needs to be taken and not the distance that you want to go.

Commitment is just where you put priorities. Most people don't have too much problems getting to work because receiving a paycheck is a priority in their lives. They will schedule things around their work because they must be there. Yet, these same people don't make worshiping God a priority. Anything that comes up becomes more important, and then they wonder why they can't follow through. "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also" (Matthew 6:19-21).

A lot of what you said is surprisingly helpful. Thank you for your message; it really does explain a few things.

I also read through several of the other links and found a link about conspiracy theories. I know this has very little to do with the first message, but do you think all of the theories are wrong? What about John Todd?

Another question, and I'm really sorry for asking so many, but just curious. I've never done confession before, and I wasn't sure if this is necessary or if it was all right that I'd never taken it upon myself to go out and confess all my sins in a church. I also rarely do go to church and have never been in a youth group seeing that my family is not particularly religious, but I do read the Bible often. Not to say my parents are atheists. I just think they never wanted to impose religion on me, but from what I understand they are both Christian in the sense that they believe in God.

Thanks again for your time.

Conspiracy theories are founded on people's fears of the unknown. They perpetuate themselves through the claim that secret organizations keep all references to themselves hidden so others can't find out; thus, explaining away their lack of proof. "For the LORD spoke thus to me with a strong hand, and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying: Do not say, 'A conspiracy,' concerning all that this people call a conspiracy, nor be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled" (Isaiah 8:11-12). See: Conspiracy Theorists and They're Out to Get You! The evidence against John Todd is quite strong. See: John Todd (occultist).

Regarding confessing sins, see: Do I need to fix all my past sins in order to repent?

Regarding attending worship services, see: Can I be a Christian and not go to church? and Does a person have to attend church?

The technical term for your parents is "agnostic." An agnostic believes there is a God, but doesn't see God as being actively involved in the world. Thus, they are not motivated to be actively involved in following God.