Guest Author - Jenna Robinson
ď If an enemy were insulting me,
I could endure it;
If a foe were raising himself against me,
I could hide from him.
But it is you, a man like myself,
My companion, my close friend,
With whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship
As we walked with the throng at the house of God.Ē
You can just hear the distress in Davidís voice as he wrote this. He was amazed that someone like himself, a believer a devote follower was turning away and persecuting him so. I find myself continually amazed at those who walk away from the faith in Jesus. I can remember when my family and I began to attend the little church in Calhan Colorado. It was a small gathering that met in the school because the building available was actually too small for the few people who attended. The Pastor was working as a janitor at the school and before that he had been a butcher at the local market. His wife was one of the secretaries there and most of the congregation were tight knit and close if not related to one another. It was the picture perfect small country church and I felt loved and embraced there.
One day, though something changed. Maybe it was familiarity or maybe it was someone new who had joined, but the church seemed to go down hill. There was a split over some funds and the way those funds were to be dealt with. There was a woman whose husband left her and her teen aged son in dire straits financially and the church board members refused to help her. Another woman attempted to lead a womenís Bible study, but when faced with difficult questions and comments, couldnít answer them Biblically. She then quit attending church altogether.
The Pastor had a falling out with his board members and dismissed them all. They eventually began their own church next door. It was strange that people who were so close and committed to the Word of God could decide that the truth wasnít what they wanted, they wanted to create their own truth.
The deception of the devil is so subtle at times that we donít see it coming until we are sitting right in the midst of it. One of his main ploys is to divide Christians. He wants us to come against one another. It takes our focus off Christ. If the Bible is black and white and clear and concise about what the Lord has set out for how He wants us to live, then why are we so divided? Why canít we live according to what God has called us to? Itís so simple, we are to love one another. And sometimes this can be the toughest of all.
What does it mean to love each other? Does it mean that everything our friend or neighbor does is OK and we arenít to confront each other? Or do we have to set out a list of guidelines so others that want to join us know what is expected? No is the answer to both of these questions. We are to live according to the commands of Jesus. What He wants from us is clear. He wants us to love. To lead with love, to guide with love, to teach with love to approach with love. Our love should be evident in everything we do. It should be how we conduct ourselves day in and day out. Without an attitude of love, we are not His children. When we are at work, we are working for Christ. He is our boss. When we are stuck in traffic, He is in the car trying to merge in right in front of us. When we are in the grocery store, He is the old man or woman who is taking up the cahiers time in front of us. He is the little child who is crying or asking a million questions, He is our spouse when we are tired and they want to cuddle or need attention.
ďI tell you the truth, whoever accepts anyone I send accepts me; and whoever accepts me accepts the one who sent me.Ē John 13:20
Remember our time is not our own, it is commissioned from God and we are to follow His lead. This is how we will demonstrate our love and how we will keep ourselves from straying from His loving embrace.