Question:

Am I worthy of God's grace? If so, why is it that I am lost and can'tcontrol my sins?

My whole childhood was a mess during my parents divorce. I guess never having a father around made me blame everything on my mother. Getting older I followed what everyone else was doing. I got badly into drugs, watching porn, and having a urge to have sex. This kept going all through high school. Soon after college my scores dropped. Now I don't have money for school.

A few months later my brother was found with drugs and had been hospitalize. I knew it was because he followed my actions. I was so disappointed.

One day my girlfriend had invited me to church with her and said God can heal, so I went and gave myself up. All went very well. I felt loved and forgiven. Then I suddenly stop going and it became a habit.This last month has been hard and so many things have gone wrong. I've sinned since I've left. Though I gave up drugs and porn, I feel as if sometimes my mind tells me to just take a look. I get wondering eyes and I catch myself before I do anything. I feel as I'm unforgivable and as if my next sin will cast me away.

I want to know God and feel Jesus' love, but I don't know how. Today I heard a phrase from Romans saying, "For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, can separate us from God." I want to help encourage others and be the man I was meant to be. I would like to be remembered not as a good but a great man.


Answer:

No one is worthy of God's grace. If they were, then it would not be grace (a gift). It would be a matter owed to the person. "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast" (Ephesians 2:8-9).

The claim that you cannot control your sins is not accurate. "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it" (I Corinthians 10:13).

You've been approaching belief in Christ from an emotional standpoint. Notice that you "felt loved and forgiven." But it should have been that you knew you were forgiven. You see, faith isn't a feeling. "So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17). It is a decision to trust based on what you know about God and His Word. "Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked" (I John 2:3-6). Feelings come and go. They are not always accurate. But Truth and God are fixed. They do not change with events in one's life.

The verse you quoted is true. "For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:38-39). God's love for you is there. Nothing outside of you is able to take that love away from you. However, this doesn't mean you can't walk away from it on your own. "Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear" (Isaiah 59:1-2).

It doesn't have to remain that way. ""But if a wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed, keeps all My statutes, and does what is lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die. None of the transgressions which he has committed shall be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has done, he shall live. Do I have any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?" says the Lord GOD, "and not that he should turn from his ways and live?"" (Ezekiel 18:21-23). God won't make you come back to Him, but He is waiting for you to turn back so He can welcome you home.

Likely the church you went to is one full of emotion but not much on teaching. Zeal is great, but it can burn out without fuel. "Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and depart from evil" (Proverbs 3:5-7). He isn't talking about some mystical leading but of you learning the truth from God and allowing God's teachings to guide the choices in your life.

Let me know if you want to learn more about how to be truly saved from sin and to fight temptation. I would love to study the Bible with you.