Tag Archives: Life

Christians Who Fail to Do

I have been away from this blog for a little while now and I am finally starting to feel the draw to come back and write.  I believe I have stated before that Christians have a responsibility to share aspects of their lives with other Christians in order to help them know they are not alone in their struggles.  The biggest struggle I have been dealing with is “not wanting to”.

There is not a person alive who can honestly say they have never not wanted to do something.  Whether it be going to see family or going to work, there are activities that we just do not want to do.

Often we will end up doing the activity, as there can be negative consequences if we do not, but there are many activities that we do not perform, simply because we do not want to.

When was the last time you saw a homeless person on the side of the road looking for money?  Did you avert your eyes as not to make eye contact with the person as you drove by?  Did you justify to yourself that they were most likely going to use the money to buy alcohol so you were doing them a favor by not giving them money?  Perhaps it was another excuse, like you wanted to help out but all you had was a twenty or larger.

Last month, I had a friend who has struggled with trying to remain celibate approach me to say they were going to hook up with an old friend and have sex.  I asked her if she was wanting me to talk her out of it and she reply “No, unless you feel moved to do so”.

How many times have we put that condition out to God?

God, if you don’t want me to do X, send a sign.  Otherwise I will assume it is ok.

It doesn’t matter that we know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Bible speaks against something and we will struggle with incredible guilt, we want to do what ever it is.  It is the simple truth Christians often ignore, but we want to do things that feel good at the time.

At the time, I did not feel like going back through the speech about how bad she would feel after she had sex or God wants better for her than simple physical pleasure.  I honestly did not want to have to muster the emotion strength to do it again, so I didn’t.

I told her that she already knows that would be said and that she should honestly do what she wanted to do.  Christianity should be based on the voluntary submission to God and not the forced compulsion that usually comes from guilt and shame.  She did not end up having sex as the guy disappeared, but she was not saved from the shame based on my action.  Maybe my inaction allowed for God to demonstrate His power by making the temptation go away.

Regardless of what the outcome was, I did not feel like doing what I was supposed to do.  I did not feel like being emotionally supportive to her during her struggle and I often wonder what kind of guilt I would have shared in based not on her actions, but my lack of action.

I want to share more stories like this, as everyday life is where people are struggling.

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The Sting of Hypocrisy

I think it was about two years ago that a friend of mine told me he and his wife were having issues. I knew he was not happy as we both vented to each other stresses we were having in our respective marriages.

My wife and I have gone through patches where we were withdrawn from each other. It is one of the downsides of going into a relationship with unresolved baggage. I do not consider divorce an option as my parents are divorced and I was never going to be like them. Not the most healthy approach, but I am stubborn at times. Several years ago, I started talking to a co-worker about her marriage problems. She and her husband had major issues and they could not fix them. She was trying to date another one of our co-workers at the time, so I never had a physical affair with her, but there was an emotional attachment that formed. I was feeling closed off from my wife, so those emotions were redirected at this person. Luckily a mutual friend confronted me about the emotional affair that I was in and that was the beginning of the end of that. I know from first hand experience how emotionally connected you can become to someone other than spouse when the marriage is not working. This is true of all relationships, but the topic is marriage so that is what I am addressing. Well, I felt convicted and made more of an effort to reconnect with my wife. It is amazing how similar both people can feel in a marriage when something is wrong. Lack of communication is really detrimental to the relationship.

When my friend and I were talking, I had a feeling that he had fallen into the same trap. He had reconnected with an old high school friend and I warned him of the possibilities of the emotional affair. He was feeling so neglected that he chose to disregard and the two developed feelings. Both of them were in unhealthy marriages at the time, so they easily became each other’s emotional support. When my friend told me he wanted to file for divorce I was bothered. I suggested counseling and even gave advice, but his mind was pretty much made up. He and his wife did try counseling, but it was not working as he was angry and emotionally involved with another woman. For me as well as many others, this is the same as cheating. He went ahead and followed through with the divorce which was awkward, all the while he was still with this girl. They had sex before both were divorced and still together now.

This is where I tell you why I am writing this. His new girlfriend is a fanatical Christian. She has a passion for God and will stand up to attacks over her stance on abortion and slavery. She refuses to watch any shows were she feels women are being objectified as a sex object or where the language is coarse. She has some really admirable convictions, yet she refuses to see how her relationship with my friend never should have taken place. The hypocrisy.

I feel such aggravation when I see her on facebook talking about how God brought this man to her. As a Christian she should know Jesus said divorce only when adultery was committed. Since she was part of the act of adultery, it really is not what God was planning is it? Am I missing something other than that God can redeem all things? She is still unapologetic about her role because she is happy with her man. If it got out as to what had happened, it would really tear up her testimony, so I have not said anything in a public forum, partly because it would hurt my friend. The other part is that I started on that path and I feel somewhat hypocritical in holding that standard to them.

This is a problem among Christians now. I keep thinking about the do not judge line and am I the best one to point out their sin. What about Peter though? Didn’t he openly reject Christ and then was restored to lead the church in Jerusalem? So, but his own example, we can fall and still hold others to the standard that they profess in Christ. I think my hardest part of this is the reflection of my sin through them. I know that I did not physically cheat on my wife, but that doesn’t make a difference to her. It was an affair of the most intimate part of our marriage so I get the constant reminder of my flaws. Now I try not to let the conviction get to me, but it is hard. Maybe I have not forgiven myself, but I can not truly justify what I did and I know the standard that I publicly held myself too. I hate failing.

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