There is no avoiding the fact that we live at the mercy of our ideas This is never more true than with our ideas about others and even about God.” (Dallas Willard)
Where did we learn about Christian performing verses Christian living? This generation is seeking for real people. That is why the world music industry is doing very well in ministering to this generation because they sing about real life, about their struggles, and how they cope with their problems. What will happen if us the church started being real? What will happen if we shared our pain with one another and prayed about it, instead of faking and hiding under the umbrella of the church, but crying inside? . Recently I attended the Bay area Pastor’s luncheon, after that a good friend of mine in ministry and me, sat down to talk about ministry and what the Lord is saying in this hour. One theme was clear and that is “we need to allow people who have a relationship with the lord Jesus Christ, to be led and controlled by the spirit of the living God and not by our own ideas.”Many of the wounds in the body of Christ today, have been and are being caused by fellow believers. This is because the only person we think and trust to make the right and holy decision is “YOU”, and not the other brother or sister. So we are quick to judge, correct, and even condemn another believer’s decision based on our own outward understanding and imagination of their situation. In the process of doing this many have been offended, others have been grieved and walked away from important relationships, even from the Lord himself. . Spiritual policing replaces the work of the Holy Spirit in another believer’s life, which intern makes you a Christian performer. There is a spiritual way of bringing correction, or restoring another believer, if it is true restoration needs to be done. First you have to be sent by God, if you send yourself to brother or a sister, out of your own emotions, religious convictions and teachings, both of you will be wounded in that conversation because you have no word from the Lord concerning the situation, for the person you are trying to bring correction to. God has not sent you, but your flesh and religion has sent you. Remember that the flesh/body is a great servant but a terrible master.
There is a place for correction, and restoration and even deliverance but it has to be done out of a burden that has been laid upon your heart by the Lord. In 2 Samuel, 12:1 Nathan is sent by the Lord to go to David. The prophet of God approaches David and tells him a story that cultivated David to listen and finally made him angry towards the man in the prophet’s story. Then the prophets tell him that the man in the story was him, look at what happens “Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.”Nathan replied, “The LORD has taken away your sin. You are not going to die.” But because by doing this you have shown utter contempt for the LORD, the son born to you will die.” We have taken the place of God in correcting others, we first gossip about them, tear them down, say what they have done wrong, throw in our personal selfish, self righteous, religious ideas and suggestions and then lie that we are praying for them. You cannot pray effectively for anyone you gossiping about. Those are called religious witchcraft prayers. In exodus Moses gets angry because of the people’s complaints, the Lord instructs him to hit the rock once, he does it twice. He misses to enter the Promised Land, holy anger towards sin can only be born out of a heart that is broken to God, and controlled by him. If the flesh takes over we will be foolish angry about people’s sins, even when we do not know what type of sin they are in. Holy anger is driven by the passion of Christ, instead of the anger being directed towards the sinner, we must be angry towards the devil and love the person enough even in their sin so we can snatch them out of the fire.
Let the spirit of God do the convictions, you take your place in your prayer closet, do not call people and say you are sharing about sister so and so issue or a brother’s actions or issues for the sake or purposes of prayer. I personally learned a hard lesson earlier own in ministry that if the Lord has given you a burden, people have come to you, for prayer those should remain with you, till you die, the holy spirit should be our prayer partner in matters concerning sensitive matters about others. We need to first try to understand the other person’s situation, why they are acting the way they are acting, do not assume that they are not hearing God, or think that they have backslidden or that they are living a lie, seek to understand so you can be understood. Some of the things we are stoning others about, God has no record of wrong. Your problem is your religious believes that you want to protect. So going back to my friend and our conversation, we have found out that the world is more caring about their own more-than the church cares for its own. You see Jesus always running to rescue those that the religious society wanted to judge, condemn and kill, he stopped for them, for such are the ones he came for.
A few years ago, the Lord started preparing me to work among the wounded, those struggling with addictions such as drugs , alcohol and many other addictions , people who have been in and out of jail, the homeless in the physical and spiritually. The Lord did not warn me of what my assignment was turning out to be. Those who have watched me grow in my preaching, can witness that it must have been the Lord. The spirit of the Lord spoke to me and said “Isabella “I have called you, to love my people and not to condemn them. Introduce me to them and let me work in their lives”. Not long after that I started ministering to people I could have not ministered to before, because i was holier than thou” in my own religious, self righteous and selfish ways, I was better than this people. But the Lord delivered me from my own performance of self righteousness; he continues to do these in other areas. In correcting others, remember the spirit of God does and will never condemn, he only convicts. If you find yourself judging and condemning, step back and ask the spirit of God to take control, continue loving these people you think that have are walking away from the Lord by their actions, with an understanding from the Lord. Religious pride will tell you to have nothing to do with them except gossip and talk about them, so you do not call them, visit them, you do not care how they wake up, go throughout the day, but you have an anointing of gossiping about them.
God’s love is pure, not based on anyone’s merit, if you loved someone before they fell into sin, or backslide in your own eyes or understanding, continue loving them, if you were friends continue being friends so you can win them back to the Lord. Do not join them in their sin but do not disconnect from them. If you loved them when they were married continue loving them when they are divorced, if you loved them when they were single continue loving them when they are married. If you loved them before they got married to this person you now think is a wrong choice or a mate from hell and not God given, still continue loving them. If you loved them when they had a job, love them when they are jobless. The love of God is deeper, wider, and higher than we think. In correcting others, ask yourself this question “What is Christ doing through me in this person’s life’s”. Jesus will heal through you, Jesus will restore through you, Jesus will give you an approach like the one he gave Nathan, and you will leave that conversation or visit with a victory by the Holy Spirit doing the work of conviction, leading to either repentance or clearer understanding of the situation. In correction do not gather all ideas from different people about the brother’s or sister’s situation then decide to approach them. Rely on what the spirit of the Lord will say. One important key to bear in mind and be convinced about is “IS THIS MY PLACE” IS THIS MY ASSIGMENT”? Many years ago I was sitting in a pastor’s office , the phone rang and she picked the phone, I heard her say to the person on the other side of the line “ I prayed about correcting your husband but the spirit of God says it’s not my assignment, the Lord will send someone to his servant your husband”. I did not understand this at all till many years later. That not everything that goes on in the body of Christ, in my church, or my family is my assignment, not every person that comes to me, is my assignment, not every problem presented to me is my assignment.
Trust the one who begun the good work in your brother or sister’s life, he is faithful to complete it in them, for his purposes and, for his glory. The Lord is their shepherd and not you, he says “Whether they turn to the right or to the left, their ears will hear a voice behind them, saying, “This is the way; walk in it. Till next week, be merciful to others, and shall find mercy in the site of God.