When You Have Returned to Me…

By Patrick Hawthorne


For the born again believer in Jesus Christ, there is no worse feeling than that of failing the Lord.  Fading memories of distant promises, too many to count; too many to remember.  All that remains is the guilt.  “Lord, I promise,” said out of a willing spirit, yet countered by a weakened flesh.  If left unchecked, these feelings of remorse may morph into feelings of throwing in the towel and walking away from the Lord.


“Lord, I am ready to go with You, both to prison and to death.”  Then He (Jesus) said, “I tell you, Peter, the rooster shall not crow this day before you will deny three times that you know Me.” Luke 22:34

Before the thought was formed or the words uttered, Jesus knew by the Holy Spirit that Peter would deny Him.  Likewise, Jesus knew that Peter would experience such deep remorse and shame that the very foundation of his faith would be shaken to the core.  Yet, with loving kindness and tender mercies, Jesus spoke life back into Peter.

“…And when you have returned to Me…” 

The Greek word for ‘returned’ is EPISTREPHO which means to turn around.  “Peter, when you have turned around and come back to Me…”  Jesus knew that although Peter’s guilt was so great that he would turn his back on God, he was not too far gone that he could not be brought back to God.

The same applies with us.  No failure is so great that our Heavenly Father will ever totally wash His hands of us. No matter how fast we run or how far we flee we cannot outrun the atonement for our sins.

“…And when you have returned to Me…”

Yes, you may fail.  Yes, you may stray.  And yes, you may feel like a failure at times.  If that is the case, turn around.  Once you do, you will begin to see things from our Heavenly Father’s perspective.  As one minister wrote, “God doesn’t see us as failures, just learners.”

For the grace of God that brings salvation (Jesus) has appeared to all men teaching us, that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously and godly lives… (Titus 2:11-12).

Jesus is our teacher; we are His students.  Our walk with Him is a learning process that involves stumbling and tripping along the way.  Sometimes we may stray off the beaten path.

“…And when you have returned to Me…”

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Posted in Christian, teaching, writing
7 comments on “When You Have Returned to Me…
  1. Jules says:

    The only failure is when we fail to get back up, let Him dust us off and start walking again. Thank God for mercy and grace, thank God He never gives up on us..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wally Fry says:

    How great is it that even when we fail, God doesn’t revoke our salvation? Pretty great, I say. Once He has us, He keeps us, even when we don’t do the right thing. Remember David saying to restore the “joy” of my salvation, not to re save him.

    Good post friend.


    • Thank you, sir. I am of the same camp when it comes to salvation. I don’t believe that a truly saved person (one whose salvation was more than a very impressive bit of lip service) will lose their salvation. I do, however, believe that a truly saved person can put themselves through hell on earth because of SELF CONDEMNATION. I am proof of that. Thank God, He is teaching me how not to get hung up in that rut.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Wally Fry says:

        Oh for sure, our Lord will allow the naturally occurring consequences of our actions to unfold; I am ample proof of that. It also illustrates why telling the Gospel to all people is so important, because we don’t know who is saved and who is not, because their current actions may or may not be the only clue. Self condemnation..yeah. Been there. I sort of came out of the chute with a legalistic bent, because I felt I had to make up for all the heinous things I did. I understand that too.


  3. SLIMJIM says:

    Amen what a great God who desire our return to Him…even though we mess up so many times.

    Liked by 1 person

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