I am disturbed. I’m a bit upset. My mind is whirling, trying to come up with answers to its own questions.
Why? Because all around me, Christians are failing. And I, in my humanness, don’t know what to do about it.
I learned yesterday of Josh Duggar’s confession that he has been secretly unfaithful to his wife over the past few years, even while he was promoting family values for a pro-marriage and pro-life organization. He resigned from that organization recently, however, due to the publicized report of his previous failures as a teenager. Those failures, I understood, were forgiven by all affected parties, but this news shocked me. To clarify, though, this post is not about Josh Duggar and I do not wish to either defend or bash him by this writing, but I am using his situation as an example and a learning point.
How can this happen to a family who has done their best to do everything right, and has strove to train up their children in the way they should go, teaching them to trust in and obey God?? Why did he choose that sinful route? How can I prevent this from happening to me??? These questions are just some of the few that are swirling around in my brain, and I am realizing that even the “best” of all Christians (which honestly, there is no such thing – God has no partiality: Romans 2:11) are not and never will be infallible. We are all susceptible to temptation. We will never get away from it, either, as long as we have breath.
But Josh is not the only example I know of. I have cousins, close friends, many acquaintances, and knowledge of people with big, powerful ministries that have backslidden and chosen sin above the Lord. I have watched families split up, young people abandon the Lord and go their own way, and soooo many others choose compromise over full obedience. It’s heartbreaking, to say the least.
Seeing conservative, homeschooled, well-trained, Christian children allow themselves to fall into such worldly, horrifying sin such as affairs and whatnot makes me wonder and worry….if they did it, how do I know I won’t? Or my siblings? Or my close friends? But as I sat in the car staring at the sun today, thinking, Jesus’ sweet voice whispered to my heart.
“You trust me, child. I’m the only One who can keep you from this, so there’s no need to worry about it. Just keep following Me and obeying my voice, and I will keep you safe from the raging storm.”
Then I realized – He’s right! Of course…He always is. 🙂 It’s not just something that “happened” to these believers so that they were uncontrollably pulled down into the deep pit of immorality or rebellion!
They chose that route themselves.
But we all know that nobody just wakes up one morning and decides to rebel against God. Rather, it happens slowly, one compromise after another; one “little sin” after another. I know this all too well from my own experience! Give Satan an inch of wiggle room in your life, and he’ll take a mile. It’s so easy to talk yourself into one insignificant wrongdoing, but most of us are deceived that that one little thing will lead to destruction! Yet Jesus has given us a way out of every. single. temptation. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
As I pondered these things, I realized that it doesn’t matter how tight and extreme I may have to make my boundaries – the most important thing is to cling to Christ and to flee sin, even the appearance of it! I don’t want to risk succumbing to the devil….yet I know that my flesh is weak and there is no way I can keep myself from sinning. But Jesus can, and He will! Remember Hannah, trust the Lord and obey His quiet, steady voice, and you needn’t worry about a thing.
Maybe you have to limit your fiction reading and movie watching and spend more time focusing on God. Maybe it’s social media that is distracting you and luring you away. Maybe it’s your constant internet surfing, or maybe it’s some friendship or relationship that isn’t honoring God.
Whatever your spiritual hindrances may be, they need to go – and that’s not an option.
1 John 1:5-7 tells us, “If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.”
It’s way too easy to pretend the Christian life. But don’t do that – set your standards high and aim for them! Don’t be satisfied with half-way Christianity or just being “better than THEM.” We live in a fallen world, and we can only rise above it with the AWESOME POWER OF JESUS CHRIST.
I and all of heaven are cheering you on! Do hard things and follow God with your whole heart, Christian! There’s nothing more truly satisfying.