30/30: My Biz. Drifting. Encourage.

20 11 2007

mind-your-own-biz.jpgWhen we think of our spiritual journey, we often take a “mind you own business” approach. We think of spirituality as a private journey between God and me. The only problem is that Christ never thought of it that way. Christianity was always intended to be personal, but it was never intended to be private. The writer of Hebrews challenges our “it’s none of my business” approach.

“See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” Hebrews 3:12-14

Why is this so important? Because all of us have the potential to spiritually drift away from our heavenly Father. And it’s the responsibility of the Christian community to “encourage one another daily” in our journey. In Greek, “encourage” means to “Appeal, Beg, Urge, and Exhort.“ In other words, when you see a Christian friend getting off track or drifting away from God, don’t “mind your own business.” Care enough about them to talk to them and be honest with them. Your willingness to encourage just might save the people you love from making decisions they regret for the rest of their lives.

Last Sunday at Epic, Scott shared a personal story about having the courage to encourage a friend who was drifting in his marriage into a relationship with a woman other than his wife. As hard as it was to “encourage,” it’s was his responsibility to intervene and speak the truth in love. His friend for a long time reacted in anger, but in the end it was a powerful story of caring more about the persons relationship with God than their reaction to you. Who in your Christian circle of friends can you depend on to talk to you when they see you start to drift?

Who in my circle of friends has started down that path?
Here’s some advice that Scott and I put together last week.

  1. Get clear about the issue.
  2. Address the issue in person.
  3. Be humble in your approach, but be honest.
  4. Commit yourself to them for the long haul
  5. Realize you may not be able to rescue them from the earthly consequences.
  6. Assure them of God’s forgiveness
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