Yesterday, disciplined; today, wounded. Ugh.
“An open rebuke is better than hidden love! Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.” – Proverbs 27:5-6 NLT
When you are running as hard and as fast from God as you can, being disciplined and having friends and family confront you are the last things you want! Any kind of confrontation by family is, to an addict, like sandpaper and salt to an open wound. Until the addict chooses to hear, no one can reach them except the Holy Spirit. I know because I have been there, and because I have witnessed it with countless others. It isn’t just drugs or alcohol that a person can be addicted to. Add in the easy ones – cigarettes, prescription drugs, shopping, hoarding, lying. Then the “bad” things: stealing, burglary; sexual addiction, whether looking at pictures in a magazine or online; even as far as the violent, despicable crimes of rape, mutilation, murder…. did you know that God doesn’t distinguish sin? Any action can become an addiction; an escape from the real world.
Why? Why does God allow this? What causes people to do the things we know aren’t right, and what on earth could allow us to harm others?
There’s only one answer, and it isn’t one many people want to hear. Free will. God gave it to the first humans to pass down through the generations because He wants us to CHOOSE Him. Even the angels have the choice of loving God or leaving Him.
“How you are fallen from heaven, O shining star, son of the morning! You have been thrown down to the earth, you who destroyed the nations of the world. For you said to yourself, ‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.’ Instead, you will be brought down to the place of the dead, down to its lowest depths. Everyone there will stare at you and ask, ‘Can this be the one who shook the earth and made the kingdoms of the world tremble? Is this the one who destroyed the world and made it into a wasteland? Is this the king who demolished the world’s greatest cities and had no mercy on his prisoners?’ ” – Isaiah 14:12-17 NLT
Lucifer, the Shining Star of heaven, wanted to be greater than the Almighty, the Creator. When Lucifer chose his desires over God’s desires, he was kicked out of heaven and along with him were the angels who followed him.
“Then there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon and his angels. And the dragon lost the battle, and he and his angels were forced out of heaven. This great dragon—the ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, the one deceiving the whole world—was thrown down to the earth with all his angels.” – Revelation 12:7-9 NLT
Satan has spent all of his time since being thrown out of heaven scheming to beat God. The only way he wins is by turning us away from our Creator LORD, and He is very vigilant about it. Michael threw Satan out of heaven, and it will be Michael at the side of Jesus when He returns for us. I want to live to see that day! There was a time when I dreaded the return of Jesus. I was always aware of the things I was doing that were sin in my life, and for years, I was powerless to change it. That answer to the “Why” questions, that free will, when given to Satan is impossible for us to get back on our own. The next question becomes “Why would anyone give SATAN control over their life???”
Again, the simple answer is that he makes it look beautiful. Whatever the sin, whatever the addiction, he makes it looks pretty and easy… much easier than the “straight and narrow path” of Jesus. Even though I’ve done it, and left the path of Jesus, I still can’t explain it. It may be narrow, but His path is well lit. Jesus said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.” – Mark 8:34 NLT
“Turn from your selfish ways….” And there’s the answer.
We turn away from Jesus because we are selfish and want things OUR way. There are only 2 ways to turn. Toward God, or toward the enemy, Satan. We are FOR Jesus, or we are AGAINST Jesus, and if we are against Him, we have chosen the enemy. Free will. That’s where our friends come in. When we become aware of a friend or family member slipping, getting into something we know is a bad thing, it is our duty as Christians to help them. Carefully, prayerfully, lovingly help. Being careful not to fall ourselves, or to wound unnecessarily. Remember:
“How can you think of saying, ‘Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.” – Luke 6:42 NLT
Discipline with care. Rebuke with more care, and only after much prayer. We don’t want it to hurt the person, just to get their attention turned to God. He is the ONLY cure; our only Salvation. Amen.
(All scriptures quoted from http://bible.com)