The Apostle Paul had to do it! Jesus had to do it! And sometimes, you too need to do it! What might that be? The one thing most difficult, and yet there are times it is the very best thing we can do for both ourselves as well as others. Instead of staying where the road is paved, we pull over to the side and get stuck in the mud with them. There are times it is better to go on your way, especially after spending time trying to help pull them out of the mess they may have gotten themselves in to.
Most have heard of couples, as well as singles, attending a church for all the wrong reasons! Sadly, the longer they stayed, the worse things got for them! Yet they stayed; after all, this is the denomination they grew up in! Furthermore, their parents had attended there for years before they had come on the scene. Another reason some stay is because their friends are there. For others, they stay because the children ‘love’ the Sunday school programs and being with friends.
All may be good reasons, but not necessarily God reasons! One day, a husband/father did something I personally don’t recommend to anyone. He had become so frustrated in the situation, that he flopped his Bible open and said under his breath; I’m going to close my eyes, put my finger on the page and whatever verse I end up pointing to, I will take as my answer as to what we are to do as a family with regards to staying or leaving that church. He asked the Lord to speak to him, and then placed his finger on a verse. It fell on Proverbs 19:27, which reads, “If you stop listening to correction, my son, you will stray from the words of knowledge.”
As an example, perhaps you’ve tried repeatedly to help someone with and through marriage and/or personal situations. Advice and well-attempted helpful suggestions have been offered, yet months, maybe years later, nothing noticeable as good or change could be seen. Some are no doubt saying, “But I love these people I’m with.” Some could even be family members who continue ‘living’ like their stuck in the mud! It was Jesus who said in Matthew 20:14, “If anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave…” When Paul and Barnabas were speaking truth in Antioch, certain Jews became filled with envy, and spoke against the two of them. Acts 13:51 tells us that Paul and Barnabas “shook off the dust from their feet against them, and went on to…” another town.
As we mature in the Lord, we may not be as sensitive to criticism, doubt, and unbelief as when we were brand new in the Lord. However, it doesn’t matter how old or mature we get in the Lord; we cannot tolerate people constantly ignoring or being determined to be against everything we say and do in offering help. We need to put ourselves in a position where we are in agreement with people speaking the Word of God and with people who both are being encouraged to change as well as those who encourage us. An individual will either build you up or tear you down! As far as their own life, they will either change for the good, or continue to walk the path that destroys. Amos 3:3 reads, “Can two walk together unless they agreed?” Don’t become stuck in muddy situations with those who have little or no desire to change for the good!
Blessings, Psalm 20:7 Dale & Jeannie