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Who is my real friends? – Part 8 – Loyal to the Down and Out

"Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens." - JRR Tolkien
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Discouragement is having lost confidence or enthusiasm; disheartened.

Faithless is disloyalty, especially to a spouse or partner. 

Loyalty is giving or showing firm and constant support or allegiance to a person or institution.

Support is bear all or part of the weight of; hold up or give assistance to, especially financially.

They say; you see who your real friends are when you are down in the dumbs.

We have all been there, maybe lost of a loved ones. My wifes friend at varsity lost two aunties, her parents and her husband in ten months to Covid and old age. 

I think for me the acid test is whether you know when your friend is going through a tough time and if you have compassion on them. 

Life is so complex today and we all are so busy making a living that we should not forget to make a life. 

Let’s see what God has to say about a discouraged / despairing man!

1. The Bible Scriptures:

14 A despairing man should receive loyalty from his friends,
even if he abandons the fear of the Almighty. – Pr 6:14

  • This makes me think of Job and his friends that was trying to encourage him. 
  • Even though Job did not abandon the fear of the Lord, but his friends was accusing him that he did something wrong to deserve this punishment from God.
  • Normally we loose hope when we take our eyes off God when going through a tough situations in life, because with God there is always hope. 
  • So when someone leaves God we should still keep in contact with them as our friends to encourage them with our lives. 
  • So do you pull back from your friends when they in your opinion leave God? Do you still innitiate friendship with them? Especially if you think they are deceived and mislead from the truth!
  • Remember Jesus called Judas a friend even after Judas kissed and betrayed Him. (Mat 26:50) Do I call people my friends still even after they have “betrayed” me?
  • Remember God has made you a watchmen for men if they leave him to bring them back and warn them to repent like we say yesterday. (Eze 33:7-8)
"Loyalty and devotion lead to bravery. Bravery leads to the spirit of self-sacrifice. The spirit of self-sacrifice creates trust in the power of love."

2. Close

– John, “To love someone who has decided to leave God and not be your friend any more is really tough. “– “First of all they do not want to take your telephone calls. “

– “They might even unfriend you on facebook and social media.”

– “The further problem is they might bad mouth you and gossip about you that make you loose loyalty and friendship with your other friends.”

 – “In the end it is really like a divorce where the kids is unhappy as well because they don’t get to see their friends of years all of a sudden because their parents have issues with each other. “

– “What really pains my heart is to see how their lives goes backward, some of them get divorced, homosexual / homosexual unnatural relationships, some become drug addicts, some still say they believe in God but think you are deceived if you still want to follow God wholeheartedly.”

– “It is like they change their attitude from a good one to a bad one. “

  • Francois yes this is very sad. 
  • It is like loosing a family member. 
  • You are still fired up for God and excited to share your faith but they pretty much have gone back to denominational “Christianity”. 
  • I even joined our former fellowship Francois like for a year in the ICOC. 
  • What I experienced was as follow:
    • I was busy studying the Bible with someone at the time and no member of the cell group / bibletalk wanted to join me in studying the Bible with the guy to help him become a Christian.
    • I think I was the only member of the bibletalk who studied the Bible with someone that year to help people become disciples of Jesus / Christians.
    • Me and the evangelist spend some time talking about life, the universe and everything but the zeal (for God’s house), fiery sermons and teach them to obey attitude wasn’t there any more. 
    • The Bible talks about “teach them to obey everything I have commanded you” coming from Jesus in Mat 28:18-20 after He called them, the disciples to make disciples and then baptized people you made disciples was not a practise any more in the church. Pretty much the one on one mentoring / discipling has stopped. 
    • When we as men got together in a group to share our lives it was very superficial and not deep sharing confessing our sin. 
    • In my opinion when someone does not live like a disciple anymore as the Bible calls them to live they are not disciples / christians any more. 
    • In my opinion the mere fact that people do not live out of free will as a disciple, might mean that they never actually became a disciple but a convert who only does things when peoples eyes are on them and their hearts were not really converted in the first place. 
    • One guy even admit to me that he hasn’t made a disciple for 22 years. Surely if he lived as a disciple someone should have became a disciple, he cannot be that unlucky or unsuccessful. 
    • Serving the poor together became non existent. I can still remember when I became a disciple in 1991 in Pretoria that some Sundays after church we used to have a soup kitchen. Also we had rallies where we served the poor together as well as visiting old age homes and childrens homes. 
    • Taking the pie chart below as an example of how things has changed. Where God used to be my first priority and first love, it has really become on the right just another one of many things I have to do in my life God not being my first priority but myself as the first priority. 

"Reconciliation heals the soul. The joy of rebuilding broken relationships and hearts. If it's healthy for your growth. Forgive and love."

3. Prayer

–  John would you please close us out in a prayer this morning.

  • My pleasure Francois.
  • Good morning Father, what can I say.
  • It is very sad to me Lord to have lost so many close friends in the ICOC.
  • The fact that there is no reconciliation just means there is no forgiveness unfortunately from my friends.
  • Lord I can remember some good times in the past when we were really devoted together to be disciples.
  • I pray that people can find it in their hearts to forgive and move on.

Amen

  •  If you would like to study the Bible and learn more, get a mentor, please feel free to contact me by whatsapp me +27 79 481 8989. Join our find your greatness meetup group. https://www.meetup.com/find-your-greatness/

4. References

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