Today’s reading in Proverbs 18:1 states, “He who separates himself seeks his own desire, he quarrels against all sound wisdom.” I could not help but stop and ponder what this proverb was really saying. The Lord prompted me to reflect that, when I am tempted to behave badly or involve myself in something a follower of Jesus should not be involved in, my flesh tells me, “Run! Do your own thing! Get away from these people who hold you accountable!” But then there are also times when I HAVE behaved badly and rebelled against the Lord’s direction, and am ashamed. It’s at those times the Enemy of my soul comes and shouts, “Leave! Run! They hate you! You are a failure! Get out!”
Our Father has redeemed His children and called them sons and daughters. He placed you and I in a family that is to love, comfort, correct, build us up....and more! Our spiritual family is to reflect Christ to us and to embrace us, faults and all. But too often, because of guilt and shame over personal failures, we flee. Not wanting to have to come face to face with our wrongs or the people we have offended, we take the ‘easy route’ and exit.
Do not allow your Enemy to remove you from the very people who can assist you on your path to holiness and Christlikeness. If he can separate you, he can continue to deceive you into believing all sorts of things that are simply not true about who you are and how much your church family loves and cares for you. Let your spiritual family build you up and hold you accountable to keep you from sinning and, when you do, allow them to love you back to wholeness. That’s God’s plan.