Church Supernaturally: But for the Grace…

Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important. Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct.

Galatians 6:1-5 NLT

Many things amaze me as I stumble through life as a Christian and a pastor. One thing that’s been a repeated shocker is the way we approach folks in the middle of tragedy. The brutal truth is that many of us spend a lot of energy judging them, not just for sin, but for anything unpleasant that happens in their lives.  If they are sick and struggling to receive healing, we diagnose their lack of faith. If someone’s kid is wandering away into the world, we assume they did a lousy parenting job. My all-time favorite is watching natural disasters on TV and pronouncing them to be God’s judgment on some demographic or geographic population.

Methinks, God has a different view of our responses to misfortunes and failures. The advice Paul gives us here is pretty good. If you catch somebody in a sin, the goal is restoration, not judgment.  In the face of any person’s distress, no matter the fault, share the load, don’tincrease it. You’re not that important, nor are you infallible. Stay off the judgment seat, it only has room for One. Take care of your own responsibilities. That should keep you busy.  When I stand at Christ’s judgment seat, He will evaluate my conduct, not yours. Part of that judgment, I’m sure, will be asimple review of how I used my opportunities for compassion. There but for thegrace of God…

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