For When You Need a Second Chance

For When You Need a Second Chance

 

I’ve lived much of my life behind masks. My masks look like confidence, strength, and security.  There are times when being confident, strong and secure are best, even when we don’t feel like it.  When I step into a job interview, meet with an executive to seal a high-stakes deal, or walk into a car dealership with my eye on one particular vehicle, it’s best to exude confidence and strength.

But when I sit down for lunch with a coworker, invite a friend to my house for coffee, or aim to speak truth to an acquaintance who is hurting, vulnerability is good. It’s ok to let others see the broken parts of my life and let my guard down.  Sometimes the truest kind of strength is simply the willingness to be seen for who I really am.  Being vulnerable and honest opens the door to deeper relationships with others.

Sometimes we wear masks purely for selfish gain. Jacob knew about this.  He literally dressed up in animal skins so that his father would mistake him for his hairy brother.  Jacob wore a mask in order to receive his brother’s blessing.  He was a cheater and a liar, and he knew exactly what he was doing.

Do you ever wonder if Jacob regretted his decision? Do you ever wonder if he wanted a second chance?

Everyone needs a second chance sometimes. Everyone blows it.  Jacob blew it when he pretended to be something – someone – other than himself.  He stole something precious from his brother, and there was no returning the blessing.

But God is a God of second chances. We see Jacob’s second chance in a wrestling match along a stream.  He wrestles all night with a man who is later revealed to be God.  They’ve been wrestling for hours, when the adversary, God, asks, “What is your name?” (Genesis 32:27).

In this moment, Jacob has a second chance. He has the opportunity to receive a blessing greater than the blessing he stole from his brother.  The Lord is about to bless Jacob, and he’s giving him a second chance.  Just as his father asked Jacob – in his hair-covered attire – to state his name, God himself asked Jacob to state his name.

Jacob answered correctly given the second opportunity.   Upon his answer, God declared, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel” (verse 28).

When Jacob was honest with God, God gave him a second chance. He blessed him, and he changed his name.  Our God is a God of second chances.

Wherever you find yourself struggling today, God is willing to give you a second chance if you’ll turn away from your sin and turn your face toward him. He will wipe the slate clean and let you begin again.

Have you been wearing any masks before God? Have you been hiding from him?

While being honest and vulnerable with others opens us to deeper levels of relationship in the human realm, being honest and vulnerable with God opens us to the possibility of a second chance. If you need a second chance today, take off your mask and talk to God about it.  He is the God of restoration and the God of second chances.

 

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About Stacey Pardoe

Stacey Pardoe is a wife, mother of two young children, writer, Bible teacher, and mentor. She is most passionate about walking closely with Christ and sharing his love with a broken world. Find out more about her at her website.

Comments

  1. Amen to that, Stacey! I can relate to this so much. Growing up, I lived in an alcoholic household where having a mask on was what I did to cover for the horrors there. I learned to be myself with God first, and that allowed me to be myself with others.

    Bless you for this timely post!

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  2. Thanks, Cherie. Masks are a difficult thing. Sometimes, especially as children without other ways to get by, we wear them just to survive. But once those masks go on, it’s very hard to take them off and be honest with others. I can see God’s hand in your life, as he has clearly worked in you and through you. You do an amazing job of blessing and encouraging others, and there’s a transparency about you that points to what God has done in your life!

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