Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I need some insight...

I have been reading this book for the past few days, and to be honest with you all, I can't put it down.  Well I am actually reading it on my Kindle app, but that is beside the point.

The adoration that I have for Beth Moore's writing and speaking is huge.  She is an amazing woman with a spunky personality.  God has blessed her immensely with the ability to communicate- and her words always hit home with me.

I have always wondered why there seems to be so many stories of church leaders who fall to sin- but I guess I never really thought about the fact that Satan's attack against them, because they are people of influence, is that much greater.  I am sure you all have your own stories of people you knew or looked up to who have been lead astray.

Beth talks about how because we are living in the End Times, we will see more and more of people who fall to ungodly things.

2 Timothy 3:1-7
But mark this:  There will be terrible times in the last days.  People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God- having a form of godliness but denying its power. 
Have nothing to do with them.  They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed woman, who are loaded down with sins and swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. 

Those 'times' surely sound like our 'times'.  Don't they?

Here is where I struggle- If there is someone out there who could help me with this, your input would be greatly appreciated.  How do you love people back after they have chosen the ungodly way- if they don't want to be reconciled?

Our office does Blackaby's "Experiencing God", and last Monday's devotional truly hit home.  Here is what is said:

Be Reconciled!

"Leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift." (Matthew 5:24)

It is useless to give offerings to God while you are at enmity with your brother. Jesus said that His followers should be reconciled with anyone who has something against them. The world seeks reconciliation on limited terms. Christians are to be reconciled, whatever it takes.

You say, “But you don’t know how deeply he hurt me! It’s unreasonable to ask me to restore our relationship.” Or, “I tried but she would not be appeased.” Jesus did not include an exception clause for our reconciliation. If the person is an enemy, Jesus said to love him (Matt. 5:44). If he persecutes you, you are to pray for him (v. 44). If she publicly humiliates you, you are not to retaliate (v. 39). If someone takes advantage of you, you are to give even more than he asks (v. 41). The world preaches “Assert yourself.” Jesus taught, “Deny yourself.” The world warns that you will be constantly exploited. Jesus’ concern was not that His disciples be treated fairly but that they show unconditional love to others regardless of how they were treated. Men spat upon Jesus and nailed Him to a cross. His response was our model: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do” (Luke 23:34).

If there were ever a command that is constantly disobeyed, it is this mandate to be reconciled. We comfort ourselves with the thought, “God knows that I tried to make things right, but my enemy refused.” God’s word does not say “Try to be reconciled,” but “Be reconciled.” Is there someone with whom you need to make peace? Then do what God tells you to do.


Advice?  Input?  Anything?


Melanie said...

my answer is simple, L-O-V-E.
I read that book about 8 years ago. but i originally started to read it 2 years prior to that and got so convicted that i put it away for a while. It is really good and helped me see things in a new light.
love ya

lisa said...

two initial thoughts come to mind (i did this study a few years ago and i think a lot of your questions will be answered as you dive deeper into it...it makes me sad that there even has to be a book about this topic)...i think we have to first remember that we are not without sin, either. God calls us to love unconditionally which I know you already know :) but I struggle, too, with how to do that when the other party doesn't want to be reconciled, ignores the sin in their lives, etc...I guess the most important thing is to love them (and tell them that), PRAY for them to recognize their ungodliness (wouldn't we want someone to do the same for us?), and remind them that God searches us out and knows our inmost thoughts and He wants to draw us near to Him...and above all, just turn it over to the Lord...we can't force someone to come to grips with their ungodliness or to turn back to Him...and I think it's okay to tell the person that you love THEM but you don't love what they did. (that was like 5 things...sorry) let me know if you find the answer, because i would love to know, too :)

*Kara* said...

I loved the thought you shared, and I've struggled with that idea myself. Here's what I believe:
Isaiah 1:18 - the Lord promises that when we repent and come unto Him, "though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow". I believe that because Christ died for everyone, everyone has the opportunity to receive His grace and be cleansed of sin. It helps me to remember that Christ loved even the people who've hurt me enough to die for them - we just can't love and hate at the same time. :) And if we have trouble loving someone, turning it over to the Lord is the best thing to do, because He loves them perfectly!

new directions blog said...

Dear Laura,
I'm new at this blogging business and have just published my first post. My blog is somewhat in line with your question. It's called New Directions; for those struggling with life changing events.
Now to your question.
When we love it is by choice. Not by feelings. Love does not require a person to change. But,for a person to change it requires love. Love also demands sacrifice. A complete surrender of oneself for the sake of the beloved.
Christ demonstrated this at Calvary. His sacrifice was for ALL humankind; past, present and to come, regardless of their sins. He never turned his back on anyone even the most downtrodden or self serving. They turned their backs on Him. Yet He still chose to love them.
G.K. Chesterton says: "I hate the world enough to change it and love it enough to believe it can."
Maybe this can be applied to those who's choices have led them to their fall.
Hope this helps,

Inspired In His Light said...

I enjoyed your post. I have personal experiences with this very topic. My blog will reflect this as soon as I get over this block...~smiling~ My first in many years! This too shall pass.
How? Prayer. If I am unable to follow His word easily then I pray, pray, pray! I ask my Church Family to pray, pray, pray. We have a log of prayers and I am happy to report that MANY have been answered!
I look forward to reading more of your posts and hope you stop in and read mine. I am new to blogger so there is not much on my blog yet. It is a work in progress and my goal is to Praise our Lord in each posting.
Stay blessed!
Becky Jo aka Inspired Hippy

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Clare said...

I was just looking at various blogs today and found this post. It just hit home with me . . . not only for myself, but also for other people I care about. That does sound like the time we are in . . . and I let that get to me on occasion. Just wanted to say I liked you post

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