Do all things in love.
When it is love that compels us to do right, then we do right. When it is guilt that drives us, we push back.
Nobody wants to be guilted into right living, right decisions, right choices.
God does not lay guilt on us – instead, He took the guilt on Himself so that we could live guilt-free.
He knew that the force of love is greater than the force of guilt.
He knew that the draw of love was stronger than the pain inflicted by condemnation and reproach.
Acceptance does a greater work than shunning.
Forgiveness draws the sinner to repentance with open arms, while condemnation shuts him out, removes hope, and produces despair, leading to hardness of heart.
After all, why should I try if I have already been rejected?
We need to be oh so careful that we do not sit on our thrones of self-righteousness and judgment, crowning ourselves the kings and queens of what God deems ok and what He doesn’t – of who He will be patient with, and who we are sure He is done with.
Romans 14:4 says, “Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls.”
But then it goes on to say, “And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand.”
God is more than able to convict, draw, and restore His own. And every time, He does it in love. Not in anger, not with shunning, not with condemnation – but with love, truth, and open arms.
Let’s all be careful not to judge, lest we also be judged.
Remember, “Each one will give an account of himself to God.” Romans 14:12. Not of those around us – not of everyone whose lives we felt called to inspect and direct – but only of ourselves.
Let us come humbly before our maker, and instead of examining the life of another, examine our own.
Much love to you.