I shared with you in June how our church was in the early stages of grappling with a leader’s public confession of sin. Although we’re only five months into this, it has been a long road. But we are watching God do a redeeming work.
I’m so grateful to those of you who prayed for our church and this precious couple during this season. Since many of you joined me in the early stages of this process through prayer, I feel like you should have an update on what is happening now.
We’ve watched this young couple take some difficult steps in this process. It involved a change of jobs, change of homes, downsizing financially, months of intensive counseling, and a process of accountability. These were fruits of repentance that were necessary and that helped in the recovery effort in practical ways.
I believe God is turning this heartbreaking situation into a platform for His glory to be seen.
When God’s people seek His face, when we truly desire to see Him glorified, He is faithful to uncover hidden sin. That is when we’re faced with the decision of how we’ll handle what He uncovers. When we turn toward Him in repentance (even if it’s only slightly at first), He more than meets us there and provides the grace to press on in obedience.
Too often when someone confesses their sin, I think the Church is so ready to move on and many steps are skipped in the process.
The offender needs to feel and understand the gravity of his sin and if he doesn’t walk through any of the consequences of that sin, we’ve shortchanged him and the process of recovery. He also needs help with removing things from his life that may disrupt the pursuit of purity. It must be his choice, but he needs to grapple with the reasons to deny himself from indulging in previous activities.
Remember what drastic measures Jesus described:
[box]If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. If your right hand makes you stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to go into hell. (Matt. 5:29–30)[/box]
Of course, we know Jesus wasn’t talking about literally severing arms and gouging out eyes. Jesus was using hyperbole to make the point that we need to take serious measures to reduce the possibility of temptation. One who is early into the journey of repentance, is not going to have much spiritual objectivity or wisdom for deciding how to navigate this road, so it is vital to have a network of mature believers involved as a “recovery team.”
The body of Christ needs to provide the fallen individual with accountability and should surround him with the help and support he needs (tomorrow’s post will deal with that).
Has God taken you down a road to redemption?
Can you share some of your story with us today?
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