I do not hide that I am a Christian. I do not hide that I am a sinner. I do not hide that I have things that I need to work on in my life. My thoughts are not always what they should be. My actions are not always what they should be. My choices are made at times in haste instead of with prayer. I am human, I have faults, I have flaws but I am saved with grace because Christ died for me.
I have had a few conversations lately that all seem to focus on the fact that many people in my life are very judgmental and negative. Many people in my life are trying to save me from the same exact things that are going on in their life that they either have blinders for or make excuses for themselves. Many people want me to open up and I just know that what is about to come, isnt’ what I need or want to hear, so I put up my boundaries and leave it be. I also remind myself, I am already saved.
I would like to be able to go up to someone. I would like to have a conversation with that person and ask them to listen. Sometimes I may ask for advice or wise counsel. Sometimes I just want to know that they will support me and stand with me. I don’t want to be open with someone to have them turn around and judge me, share negative thoughts and words with me or then share with others. I am an introvert by nature and when I take the time to get to know you and open up to you, I trust you.
If you head down a negative path and become judgmental the trust starts to break down. If I come to you again and we go down the same road, sooner or later I lose the trust and faith that you support me. That you are here for me. That you are the person I should be going to for wise counsel.
Listen to advice and accept what you are taught. In the end you will be wise.
I admit there are times I really need to work on this myself. I get into a situation and I become negative. I can’t wait for it to be done and over. I can’t help but judge the other person and their actions. I allow other situations and the past to influence current circumstances at times. If I have a first time situation with a person, I can let the past change my view on it. So I have to work exceptionally hard to toss the judgment and negativity. I have to take a step back and reevaluate what is actually going on with the current situation. If this has happened with the person before, I have to make decisions about trust (but that is a whole other story there).
When I come to a person it isn’t for them to live my life for me. It isn’t for them to be upset with the way I am living my life. This is my life. This isn’t their life. My path is not your path. We may have similar paths, but we are each given our own path by God. When we have a relationship with Him, we know where we should go and what we should do. Even when we make a wrong turn in our life, He is able to work it out for good. It can be a lesson, it can be a trial, it can be patience, it is used and worked out for good; if we let Him.
For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do Not Fear; I will help you!
I do understand why we get upset when someone doesn’t listen to the advice we give them. Most of the time we have lived through what they are going through. We do not like seeing friends and family making similar mistakes we have made. We want to stop them so that they do not have to suffer. But again, this is their path and their path is not my path. God can and does use any situation we have placed ourselves in. He can and does use any situation that others have placed us in. Nothing is beyond God’s ability.
If this was a perfect world there would have been zero need for God to send His son to save our miserable, sinning, selfish souls. Yet we all have that part of us that needs Him. We may not know it, we may not admit it and we may not act like it. Still, He has always been there. Even when we ignore him, but that is even more of a reason why He needed to send Jesus to save us and give us grace.
Change can and does happen in life. In order for change to happen in life you need support and love and understanding. You do not need judgment and negativity and being reminded of who you were.
Character is who you are and what you do when no one is looking.
There have been two national stories on the news about inmates. One of those stories was about two inmates who (I believe) were on their way to a work detail, ended up overpowering guards, taking their lives and going on the run. We don’t need to highlight those two. If you were not aware of this story they did end up giving up after being on the run.
The next story that has been out there about inmates tells me so much. In Polk County, Georgia there were six inmates who were on a work detail in a cemetery. The sheriff who was with them, was their normal work detail officer and he passed out. Instead of these men running away since their supervisor was down and unconscious, they rushed to his side. They opened his shirt, removed his bulletproof vest and started CPR. At the same time another one of the men took his phone and called 911 to save his life. To read their story you can go here.
This just reminds me that we are all fallen people who make bad choices. Some of those choices result in prison unfortunately, but treating these inmates as humans and having compassion for them, they saved an officers life instead of running away and letting him die. Character is who you are when no one is looking and they proved who they have become, not who they were. Those men had no idea they would be an example for the world with their actions and yet, here they are.
Support, love, comfort, listening, compassion, advice, wise counsel and treating people humans who make mistakes is what everyone needs. Being negative and judgmental and angry and cruel doesn’t get anyone anywhere.
What do you do in your life? Do you fall on to the negative train? Do you take the path of support and love?