I’ll make this as brief as I can, hoping it doesn’t sound preachy. This is all drawn from my own experience, and I thought it might help some Christian out there. OK, here goes:
I was born and raised in the Message of the Hour. I have ever talked about how the devil convinced me my story of salvation was not that great because I had never really been out there in the world (you can read that post here). To cut the long story short, in my days of wandering, there was a time I thought people from my church were just out to get me. Whenever they tried to correct me and point me in the right direction, in my head, I felt like they were like stalkers; they were judgy and just wouldn’t LET ME BE (“ugh, why are people so nosy?!! Iwowo are they perfect?”)
In retrospect, I am grateful for each and every person who didn’t stand by as I was drifting far from God. They saw me, they cared and they corrected me. I’m also glad that through it all, I never stopped asking God to help me. I don’t know why I just didn’t give up, but I attribute it all to God’s grace.
I believe that a Christian will make mistakes. We will fall on our faces. We might wander far from God’s perfect will and end up in trouble somewhere. But you know what matters? It is what you do when you are told and/or realise you are wrong.
I noticed that a lot of us rush to defend ourselves, completely deny or even label people who are just trying to correct us as “judgy” or just “out to get us”.
Listen. Listen real good.
We are all going to make mistakes at some point. Please, do not cover up your sins and pretend everything is alright and carry on. Admit that you are wrong. Repent! Cry out to God and ask Him to help you change. Don’t stay down when you can ask Him to help you get back up. He will be ready to get you back on track.
Have a heart that is constantly longing to be like the Lord Jesus. Don’t stop trying. Kaya you keep falling because of the same thing, get back up and try again. One day, you will overcome that thing and move past it. And don’t be tempted to stay away from church. That’s the devil’s trick, trying to distance you from God. You know that time you really feel like a sinner? And you don’t feel like going to church? That’s the time you should go, so you can get cleansed by God’s Word and gain more courage for the battle you are facing.
If you keep denying your mistakes and refuse to repent, someday, you might cross the line. There may be no more grace for you, after God gave you so many chances to repent (through the preaching of the Word, through a Christian friend correcting you) and you hardened your heart. Then, you will have to face the consequences because you couldn’t just humble yourself and ask God to forgive you. You might have to go through this miserable life alone, just waiting for the dreadful Judgment Day.
Remember Judas at the Last Supper? Jesus actually called Him out several times, giving him a chance to repent (kenako nkumuuza kuti chabwino, zipitani kapangeni). He went ahead and sold Jesus for pieces of silver he never even got to spend.
Let me finish by saying that if you see your Christian brother or sister in the wrong, and you stand back and don’t correct them with love, you are as guilty. My bestfriend expresses it well: if you see your friend drowning, why would you just stand there and watch them die? That is EVIL. It doesn’t matter whether you think they won’t change or they will look at you different, or even start to hate you. Just. Do. Your. Part! Leave the rest to him/her and God (of course don’t stop praying for them).
I personally appreciate anyone who comes to me and corrects me with love. I know they care about me and want to see me be the best I can be. If you just stand there and watch me drown, you don’t have the love of God in you and we know there’s no way you will enter heaven if you don’t have perfect love in you, “so whatever you do, you lay aside everything else until you are just so filled with the love of God…” (Rev. William Marrion Branham, 60-0522E – Adoption #4).
-“If you’ve made a mistake, some woman made a mistake, some man made a mistake, some boy or girl made a mistake; don’t sink. Scream out, in despair, “Lord, save me, or I’ll perish!” Get desperate about it. God will hear you. He always hears a desperate soul.” 63-0901E – Desperations. Rev. William Marrion Branham
-“Love is corrective. If it isn’t corrective, it isn’t love.” 63-0319 – The Second Seal. Rev. William Marrion Branham.