Why doesn't someone remind me not to hit that 'home' button on facebook?
I want to be an encouragement to others. I want to rejoice with them over good news. I want to know of victories of people who have big life struggles going on right now. I want to be there to give them the attagirl or boy they need and deserve.
I have many new facebook friends who started out as followers of the blog. Young women who fight addictions and toxic relationships, trying to focus their energies on building a new and close relationship with the Lord. I get many private messages, and I want to watch and help and encourage. I hit that 'like' button and rejoice over their determination to please God. And I'm reminded to pray for them.
But it doesn't take long, in reading through the news feed, to become discouraged myself. So much negativity. So much meanness and backbiting. So many airing their dirty laundry and wrestling in the mud. So much judgement based on false information. So many rumors and lies, and people rejoicing in them. So much celebration of wrong and evil. So much junk to sort through to get to what I'm looking for. And after a few minutes, I'm pretty downtrodden and need a good dose of 'attagirl' myself. I need to be careful. We've talked of it before. Read Think On These Things.
The unsaved don't bother me. I expect the world to act like the world. They don't know any better. That's our job-- to tell them.
But it's those who name the name of Christ who get to me. I wonder how they can live the way they do. And then I am reminded that not all who call Him Lord are His. I'm reminded of a story that Jesus told in Matthew chapter thirteen:
24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
Later on in the same chapter the disciples asked Jesus what that all meant. And so, He explained (but in my own words):
The field is the world in which we live. The One sowing the good seed is Jesus Himself. The good seeds are those truly born again through the finished work of Christ. The tares are the unsaved, and the one sowing them is the devil himself. And satan, the enemy of God, comes in the night and plants his own seed right in the midst of God's own.
Then Jesus tells us that it is best for them all to grow up together. That removing the tares would damage the wheat. That satan's seed will be dealt with when the time comes, in the judgement. Then God's children will be safely in heaven, rejoicing around the throne of God. No more tares!
And so, the words of Jesus Himself puts things all in perspective for me. Everyone who names the name of Jesus is not of Him. Some are tares. The eleven apostles who lived with and sat at the feet of Jesus for three and a half years did not suspect that the twelfth one of the group was a tare, even though he had been with them that whole time. Judas was not saved, and the Bible calls him a devil. Yet the others did not know. (Okay, I personally think that John may have at least suspected. He was very close to Jesus. But that is just my opinion and I can't give you chapter and verse for it, so don't quote me.) :)
Jesus tells me to not worry about the tares. To keep my eyes on Him and not worry about anyone else. He's got this all under control. Not my circus, not my monkeys. I need to just let God take care of His business and do as I'm told. Obedience to Him. Abiding in Him.
Phew! That was close! I didn't know what in the world I was gonna do to clean up that mess! I'm glad God's got this. I trust Him!
Matthew 7:21-23 - "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
Sad words. Very sad words, indeed!
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