“Follow the steps of good men instead, and stay on the paths of the righteous. For only the godly will live in the land, and those with integrity will remain in it. But the wicked will be removed from the land, and the treacherous will be uprooted.”
Proverbs 2:20-22 NLT
They had a great family, a girl living with them who wanted to learn how a Christian family functioned. They led Bible studies, and discipled others. They were well respected in the Christian community and in their church. From all appearances, they had it all.
We met in their home weekly for a Bible study, a group of young married couples wanting to grow in the Lord and looking up to them for how to have godly marriages and homes, hungry to grow in the word of God.
Then, one day, it all fell apart. He was having an affair, and it wasn’t the first. He had a drinking problem. He went to live with the other woman. His wife and kids were devastated. His ministry was in shambles. His witness shredded and damaged beyond repair.
Something good came out of that experience. We learned to look carefully at the lives of people and examine what they were doing in their personal lives. We learned not to keep our eyes on people, but on the Lord. People are frail and fallible; God is eternal and always faithful.
Our former leader finally repented after years of self-indulgent living. His death was reported to be the result of his years of drinking. In the end, his former wife and ministry partner cared for him, showing a truly godly love and forgiveness. How sad that a life with such promise was used as an example of “do as I say, not as I do,” rather than of the victory and fruitfulness which should be the result of a Christian life.
One of my most consistent prayers is to live the same life in the privacy of my own heart and home that I live in the public eye of my family, friends, church, and ministry. I don’t want to be a hypocrite, but a powerful example of what God can do in an ordinary life to make it extraordinary.
Lord, help me to see myself through your eyes. Show me my faults and don’t let me get away with justifying things which are contrary to your word. Make me a faithful and fruitful member of your body, someone of whom you can say, “Well done good and faithful servant,” not one who will be uprooted and removed from the land.
© Copyright 2012 by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman and www.normagail-2mefromhim.blogspot.com. All Rights Reserved.