It’s amazing the level of betrayal someone feels when you share God’s Word with them.
No, it’s really not. I understand all that intellectually. After all, the sinful nature is hostile to God, and it’s a clever sunnova. It’ll worm its way into a person’s heart – not difficult, since it lives there – and turn people away from God. And when someone calls back, when someone warns against sin, well, of course the sinful nature will hiss and spit. And it’s your fault, if you’re the one warning. And the other person will blame you for any problems – not their own sin, oh, no, it couldn’t be their own sin, even if they fess up to that sin.
There’s more than one person here in my congregation that has turned me into the enemy. When they see me, they back away, as if I’ve dealt them some sort of mortal blow. Some avoid me altogether. Others have accused me of trying to destroy their families.
And all this, because I shared the Word of God with them. All this, because I love them. Because, honestly, if I didn’t love them, I’d let them go on and damage their faith and reject Jesus and walk straight into hell.
But I do love them. So I warn them. With acid in my stomach at the thought of it, with prayers to God to remind me that yes, I really do love this person, and yes, this is the best thing, I warn them. And they, in turn, believe that I have betrayed them.
It’s been hard lately – stupid hard, and it really shouldn’t be. I know all this intellectually. I braced myself emotionally. But you know what?
I’m tired of it. You want to make me the enemy? Fine. I’m the bad guy. You want to walk into hell, despite my warnings? Fine. Go.
Which brings me to the Hunger Games.
Spoilers ahead for Mockingjay, the third book of the Hunger Games trilogy, if such things matter to you. (more…)