Psalm 106:34-37, 39-40, 43-44
20th Week in Ordinary Time
It was thus the Lord took pity on their distressful cries of affliction under their oppressors. (Judges 2:18)
Have you ever hesitated to go to Confession because you feel like you’ll just say the same things you confessed last time? Have you felt a bit discouraged because it seems you’re still struggling with a sin pattern that has been hard to get over? If so, just look at God’s relationship with Israel under the Judges.
God’s people seemed to have had trouble being faithful to him. Even when the Lord raised up judges to lead them and rescue them from their enemies, the people kept returning to the same patterns that separated them from God in the first place. Surrounded by temptation, they lost sight of God. But God didn’t give up on them. He kept sending them judges to protect and lead them, to save them from the consequences of their choices to abandon his ways. Moved by mercy, God sent them a new judge over and over and over again.
Now, these judges were precursors to Jesus. But none of them were perfect. Each had his own flaws, which could make it hard for God’s people to enter fully into the salvation that God was offering them. Think of Samson falling for the seductions of Delilah and losing his strength. Think of Jephthah’s rash vow, which led to his daughter’s death. Not one of the judges was the perfect answer. They all struggled with some kind of sin or weakness or failing—just as we do.
When you find yourself feeling hopeless and caught up in a struggle, take a moment to recall who Jesus is and what he has done. He is the perfect Savior and Judge, and he hasn’t given up on you. Even if you can’t see it, he is by your side, offering you his strength and his comfort. And if Christ is with you, you can be sure that you are making progress—even if it doesn’t look like it.
So don’t hesitate to go to Confession. God’s mercy won’t fail. He won’t give up on you! Jesus, your perfect Redeemer and Deliverer, is waiting for you, ready to lift the burden of guilt and give you more strength to turn away from sin.
“Lord, even when I feel defeated, I trust in your mercy and forgiveness. Strengthen me so that I can come to you in confidence and be reconciled.”~WAU