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  • Writer's pictureBonnie Smith

Turned from God?

Having not been raised in a church and never learned religion, I feel I have eyes that can see the whole picture. Both sides of the fence in regards to those who go to church and those who don’t because I have been both. It also gives me a true view of those who are merely religious versus those seeking to truly know God. Those striving to show Him love and show those around them love. Why am I sharing this? Because our society is turning from God more and more and the younger generations are turning from God in breakneck speed and it breaks my heart. Not because I want everyone to be part of some “club” and see things my way. But instead, because I know too well the anxiety, depression and hopelessness that comes from a life lived without God. And what breaks my heart even more is that it’s self professed “Christians” who are turning them away. Both Christians who mean well and feel it’s their duty to harshly point out the sin in those around them, or worse, “Christians” who live severely dual lives. They go to church, serve in the church, go to Bible studies...the works, yet they have secret sins they don’t plan to give up or attempt to break free from. I’m talking about Sin that hurts those around them whether such as affairs, porn addictions, child molestations or pride and a haughty spirit. Sadly, I have seen more Christians turn from God and the church because of what another “Christian” did to them. Horrible things with no remorse or repentance whatsoever. Those who do this have such secret sin that they even keep it hidden from themselves at times. And instead of facing their sins head-on, they focus on and elevate the sins of others to make them feel better about themselves. As Christians we are called to love and protect others. We are called to share “the good news” and yes, teach truth but teach it in love. God and His Holy Spirit provide us with the conviction we need to perceive we are on the wrong path. He doesn’t need our help in this area of conviction. Not to mention, the great deceiver, Satan, heaps enough burdensome guilt, shame and anxiety on all of us when we sin. This is why Jesus gave us a new command “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” John 13:34-35 and “Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Matthew 22:37-39 This is of utmost importance to Him and should be our utmost important assignment each and every day. We are to unconditionally love others...even those who oppose us the most...especially those. This doesn’t mean we don’t teach truth from Gods Word but we must do it with the right heart. Check your heart and demeanor before taking on that delicate task. So my plea to those who have turned from God because of things someone who called themselves a “Christian” has done to you, is that I am truly sorry you were betrayed by someone you should have been able to trust! And I beg you, do not punish God (and yourself) for what they did to you. God does not overlook the hurt done to the innocent. Let Him deal with those who commit evil so you can find peace and joy again by being united with your Heavenly Father, who loves you more than you know. I watched my mom spend her life not trusting God because she felt God allowed wicked men to do things to her as a child. It wasn’t until the end of her life that she finally let go of the fears and sought peace and comfort from a loving God. People are going to hurt us because we all have the freedom to choose our own actions and some choose the evil path. But don’t confuse the evil of humans with who God is. God is good even when we humans are bad. “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith...? In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.” 1 Peter 5:7-10 For those who call themselves “Christians” we must remember that a Christian is some who strives to live as Christ and not just a member of a Christian Country Club of sorts. Are our hearts and acts revealing the nature of God or are they in opposition? ““I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!” Revelation 3:15-16 ““And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.” Matthew 7:3-5 As my husband says “Clean your own front porch before you go try to clean off your neighbors.”

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