Friday, December 18, 2009

Crushing Grief

I shall return to my study on Love soon enough. I am preparing my next post, but, in the meantime, I have only this to offer...a little bit of my heart....

Does anything hurt or grieve a heart more than to know that a dearly loved one has returned to Egypt, following after the lusts of their own flesh, and unwilling to receive correction and wisdom? But greater is the grief in one's self for causing that dear one to stumble in such a way.
One recalls that much-awaited day when, after many agonizing prayers, a dear friend received the life of Christ. All was joy. All was joy. New life and hope burst forth!
But the shadow of self came and disrupted the growth of that new life. Through the indulging of self-interests and desires, the one who had prayed (one who had supposedly been further along in growth of wisdom), turned the other from continuing its reach to the Son. Like one, who after much waiting and watering over a seed, becomes impatient after seeing the flower in its first stage of budding and selfishly plucks it before it had the chance to truly blossom.
One is burdened to think that nothing could redeem this sin of turning a brother away from the Lord, which in turn led the brother to sin horribly, cruelly betraying the trust of many, and thrusting a dagger into the very heart of the one who had, in the past, watered it and loved it so.

Such grief is crushing to the human heart.

It is a weight that refuses to be lifted until it can be known that the lost soul will not utterly forsake the Lord, that the lost soul will be redeemed for the sake of His holy name.

In truth, I would give anything to return to a time when that soul was in my life...before sin separated us from each other...when that soul was listening to my words, regarding them with great interest. What I would give to have only spoken of the grace found walking daily in repentance and the life of Christ. What I would give to have only spoken truths of the Gospel to that soul. What I would give to have only spoken Biblical truths about dying to self and living to Christ. What I would give to have continued watering that soul with Scripture and gracious words filled with our Father's wisdom. What I would give to have never turned that soul from God to look upon me as their Greatest Good.
If I could have seen then as I see now...if I could have known then as I know now...I would have never dared to entertain that soul with such fleshly things...I would never have been so selfish. That bud was not for me. It was not mine. How could I have ever tread upon the glory of the Lord?

"...there are some among us who heart-break is that they have no sure and certain hope about their dearest, who have passed beyond reach of human love and influence. May I offer this which comes to me in the form of a question: Does to be out of reach of our love and influence mean to be out of reach of His who said, "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me?" ?"
- Amy Carmichael

Here I am, resting in the hope that He who began a good work in that soul will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ (Phil 1:6).

Forgive me, Father.