by: Carole L. Haines
12 For the word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, even penetrating as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him to whom we must answer. (Hebrews 4:12-13)
I was speaking with a friend about Leadership Issues. Someone she admired had recently stepped away from Leadership Responsibilities without any warning; just dropped out, not showing up anymore, no explanation. My response was to say,
“Well, there’s a right way to bow out and a wrong way. That’s the wrong way.” How self-righteous of me. God gently reminded me of my own flawed leadership exits on the way home, recalling this one Scripture to my mind which I have used many times before, when I have felt judged by others.
“Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.”
God proceeded to point out to me 3 specific times I have bowed out of Leadership in that very same way in my past. I gave very little or no explanation. I just made my excuses and bowed out. One time in particular, I did in vengefully, hoping it would cause problems for those who hurt me. OUCH! It hurts to see our sin, doesn’t it? I shared the first part of a Hebrews passage in the beginning of this post, but here now is the rest of that Scripture.
14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let’s hold firmly to our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things just as we are, yet without sin. 16 Therefore let’s approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace for help at the time of our need. (Hebrews 12:14-16)
Thank You, God, for Jesus! What would I ever do with my sin without Him? It would just pile up on me until the weight pushed me all the way down into the ground, immobilizing me in regret. God’s Word tells me that“ …all discipline seems not to be pleasant, but painful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterward it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” (Hebrews 12:11)
O I want that peaceful fruit of righteousness, therefore I need to let God train me through His discipline and bring me to full maturity in Christ. I am learning to embrace the Discipline of God. He loves me. Dear Believer, It is worth all the struggle to grow up in Jesus. Tell me what you have experienced of God’s disciplining love.