Welcome to DAY 25 of our online Bible study on James!
— Read: James 5:19-20 —
It was easier for me to say nothing.
I kept reasoning to myself that I didn’t want to create a rift in our relationship or cause unnecessary awkwardness. But the more I tried to make small talk, the more impossible it became.
Years of past hurt swelled in my heart. So with gentleness and restraint, I told my loved one how his choices affected me. To my surprise, he received it without bitterness or resentment.
What did surprise me was this: He didn’t know.
He didn’t see how the ripple effect of his choices extended further than those he was in contact with on a daily basis. It affected his entire family, friends, and loved ones.
As I look back on our conversation, I wonder how long he would have continued in oblivion if I’d said nothing. Years? A lifetime?
When I see a brother or sister veering off the narrow path God has for them, I often assume they know. I think they are aware of the consequences of their decisions and see the long-term effects, but often this isn’t true. Other times I reason, “It’s not my place to judge.” And it isn’t.
God is the only One who can truly see into a person’s heart.
The problem comes when I use love as an excuse rather than active verb. Because love isn’t passive. Watching someone walk straight onto the path of death and destruction without a word of truth or warning isn’t love. It’s denial.
Our job isn’t to set a person’s path straight. Only God and a willing spirit can do that.
Our job is to be an instrument. To speak truth and love into someone’s situation.
Do you know what’s so beautiful about being obedient to this command?
Doing so can protect someone not only from their current sin, but from a multitude of sins. It can restore our brothers and sisters to the way of life and affect choices not only now, but for years to come. Our words can bring life to a soul headed toward death. We simply have to open our mouths and let Him speak through us.
I don’t know about you, but I want to be an active voice of love. I want to be a willing instrument in the hands of Christ, who can do a mighty work in any heart that’s being led astray.
— Diving Deeper —
Why is it important to reach out
to a friend who has wandered from the truth?
What happens when we help someone turn back to God?
Share in the comments…