“Deserve” is a funny word we like to use. We also like to determine who does or does not deserve something. He didn’t complete what he was supposed to do, so he doesn’t deserve a reward. She worked really hard. She deserves a raise. That city has been through a lot. They deserve to win. Whether or not we feel we, or someone else, deserves something, we base it off of something done or qualities we deem necessary of the reward or punishment. We tend to give ourselves the grace necessary for the rewards while being more strict on others and their worthiness. We like to sit in the judgement seat rather than in the defendant’s seat when it comes to deserving something.
Many times I go to God and pray, “Lord, I don’t deserve forgiveness, but I need it. I don’t deserve your grace, but I have to have it. Will you wrap me in the righteousness of Jesus?” When I sin, it’s hard to ask for forgiveness because I know in my heart that I don’t deserve it, but that’s really the point. God offers us forgiveness when we least deserve it because of His love for us. It was while we were far from God in sin that Jesus died for us. We didn’t deserve the sacrifice, but He did it anyway because of His desire to have a relationship with you and me. There’s nothing we could ever do to deserve what He’s done.
Psalm 103:8 says, “Lord, you’re so kind and tenderhearted to those who don’t deserve it and so patient with people who fail you! Your love is like a flooding river overflowing its banks with kindness” (TPT). God is not out to get you when you sin. He’s not up there with lightning bolts ready to give you what you deserve. He’s a loving and kind God who gives you what you don’t deserve which is grace. He understands our weaknesses and has patience with us when we fail. If you’re trying to do good after you do something wrong in order to get in God’s favor and good graces again, you’re doing it wrong. He extends forgiveness, not because you are worthy, but because He is.