Have you ever had a negative encounter with someone from your church? I have. I wondered how she could consider herself a Christian after she acted that way? How can a Christian gossip against you? How can a Christian betray you? I love Jesus, and I believe that he died on the cross to forgive our sins and ascended into heaven and now seated at the right hand of our father. Just because I am a Christian, does not mean I am perfect and don’t make mistakes. I make plenty of mistakes, and frankly I have no right to judge others, no matter what the circumstances. That is God’s job. I can be hurt, upset and disappointed, but I cannot claim that I wouldn’t do the same thing.
God knows that we have a sinful nature, and he created us that way. He also promised us a savior, and he fulfilled his promise with Jesus. We are still a bunch of sinful people running around the earth, even if we believe in Jesus and go to church. We can humble ourselves to the Lord, and he will forgive us and raise us up again.
For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.
–Matthew 23:12 (NIV)
Some people feel like they need to appear perfect on the outside. Not necessarily a super model or actor, but an angelic person with little sin. Sometimes its so much work appearing perfect, that your insides become “full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” God is not calling for perfection. God is perfection. God is calling us to draw near to his heart. God wants us to seek his heart. God wants us to seek his wisdom. God wants us to seek his love.
In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.
–Matthew 23:28 (NIV)
It is not always easy being a Christian now. Society wants us to drop some of our biblical values to adopt what society has deemed acceptable, not God. People will get mad at us for standing firm in our faith. In some countries, Christians are still put to death because of their faith. They refuse to denounce their Christianity, even if it means death. Perhaps God is using these Christians to show their persecutors all of God’s unfathomable, undeniable glory.
Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.
–Matthew 24:12-13 (NIV)
We are so attached to the things of this life. We will die and lose all our earthly possessions. Heaven and earth will pass away, but God’s words remain forever.
Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
–Matthew 24:35 (NIV)
Stand firm in your faith, against a world that doesn’t want you to be faithful. You don’t have to be perfect. You can make mistakes. But, you do need to humble yourself to the Lord and put your complete trust in God.