I've been convicted...it's not fun, it doesn't feel good, it hurts my heart deeply...but I am SO thankful for it! I am so thankful that I have a God who loves and cares for me enough to discipline me, to get my heart back on track!
Proverbs 3:11-12,"My son, do not despise the LORD's discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in."
Revelation 3:19,"Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent."
For the last couple of months, I have been preparing to "hold court" regarding a certain situation. When the opportunities arose, I have happily been "gathering evidence" for the prosecution. Mentally, I have prepared a line of questioning for the "accused" and a even came up with some ideas for a "closing argument" if such a need for one came about. I have been anticipating the time when court would finally be "in-session" and the guilty would be charged and their sentences handed down. I have been enraged that the parties in question have shown so little care for what they have done, the lies they have told, and the blatant disrespect they continue to exhibit. I have felt right in my anger and my judgment.
Today, I was convicted....
It is not my place to "hold court". I have been wrong in my attitude. I have been wrong in my desire to see them "pay" for what they are doing. WRONG! I have no right to have that kind of attitude! No right to look at their faults and their mess-ups, without first taking a long hard look at my own. Where is my love, my compassion, my genuine concern for the direction they are headed? Because up til now...my concern has not been for them and the path they are going down, but instead on making sure they were brought to justice. I can't do that anymore! God looks at my sin no different! My sin is just as ugly and appalling to Him.
Now that said, I don't condone their actions...but I'm done condemning the person. I don't love what they are doing, but I am going to love them. The same God who looks down at their sin and hates it, hates mine too. The same Blood that spilled for my sins, spilled for theirs too. The same forgiving and gracious God who loves me unconditionally, loves them too. The same God of love who loves me so boldly, commands me to love others in the same way.
John 13:34,"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another."
1 Corinthians 13:1-3,"If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing."
I choose love! I am choosing to love them as Christ would! It's not going to be easy, or like a light-switch. It's going to have to be an intentional act on my part. It doesn't just happen, that's why God reminds us so many times throughout Scripture to love one another. I have to make that choice for myself. I know that the Lord will help me! He who calls me is FAITHFUL!
When and if a intervention is necessary, it must come with an attitude of Christ-like love, with intentions carefully weighed against the holy and perfect example of Jesus Christ Himself!