Human Nature Demands that someone will, in your lifetime:
1. Betray You
2. Deny your friendship/relationship when the heat is on
3. Abandon you in your time of need for selfish reasons
"Then they all forsook Him and fled." Matthew 26:56
The Lord Jesus invested so much in His relationship with 12 men (His disciples/Apostles) and look at what He went through with them in the end. The Lord more than understands the hurtful, painful things we experience in friendships and family relationships. Even among believers we can and will go through much of the same. The Lord understands the things people will sacrifice where a relationship with you is concerned.
Not everyone hangs around you for pure reasons. This was true of Judas Iscariot. We see that the love of money caused him to betray his relationship with Christ.
The Lord foretold for Peter what his reaction would be when the heat was on. Peter really thought that he was capable of a faithful, dedicated relationship with the Lord. He meant it at the time, but when the challenge came, he denied Jesus. The disciple who laid his head on the breast of the Lord (John), he too fled and forsook the Lord.
In Luke 22 we read the account of what took place with Peter's denial (vs. 31-34; 54-62).
It is true that whatever the Lord Jesus suffered on earth, His followers will suffer much of the same. He tells us to prepare to suffer many things as a Christian. We must not be surprised when we are hated, rejected, scorned, disowned, cursed, and lied on by those who know not Christ as personal Savior. It will hurt, especially when it comes from those of our own family or those, we were close with. As a Christian we will have to make certain decisions and choices that won't go over easy with people. They will almost always label us as thinking that we're:
1. Better than others
2. Full of ourselves (prideful)
3. Looking down on others
These are the comments we may receive from those in the world who don't understand our need to separate from anything or anyone that goes against the lifestyle we have chosen to live.
As for the Disciples, they were afraid and reacted based on fear. Peter had great remorse and regret for having done so. He wept bitterly. Judas on the other hand, was riddled with guilt and tried to undo what he'd done and when that failed, he committed suicide. There's a difference between guilt and remorse. They are not one in the same. Remorse leads to repentance while guilt terrorizes the individual to no end. Remorse is being sorrowful for what you did. A guilty conscience just leaves you in turmoil and you aren't saying you are sorry for anything because you don't acknowledge any wrongdoing.
Are you willing and ready to take a bold stand for what is right as a Christian? Are you able to lose relationships to follow the Lord God? Can you take the ridicule, rejection and the ostracizing from unbelievers as well as believers? Why have I thrown 'believers' into the equation? I added them there because not every Christian is an obedient child of God. Some are worldly and saved by profession of faith only. Some may not be really saved and have a resemblance of a Christian by way of attending church, serving and talking the talk. Some believers hate their brother. We read of that in 1 John 3:9-11.
Let us draw near to God and He promises to draw near to us. Let's keep a strong and steady prayer life in order to receive the strength and help we need in times of challenge. Ask God to help you to be bold and courageous no matter what. He is faithful, He will help us to do just that.
"The ruin of a nation begins in the homes of its people."
"By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established, by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches." Proverbs 21:3-4
Nations are comprised of families and families are comprised of individual people. When we look at the nations around us, what do we see? When we look at the particular State we live in, what do we see? When we look at the city we dwell in, what do we see? When we look at the community we live in, what have we learned? Each is a characteristic of the families within them.
Things have degenerated to the point where we can only speak to a portion of individuals or families around us that mirror morality, respect with character.
We cannot change what is, but we can make sure that we make a profitable, healthy contribution to society. We are responsible for ourselves.
You can grow up in the worst of situations, but cannot blame ill behavior, disrespect and lawlessness on the individuals who raised you. Each person knows wrong from right. Life is about choices and we each are free to make them. The challenge is in making the right choices in every area of our lives.
Parents have the awesome responsibility to raise their children in an environment that will breed
love, respect, and morality. Children, more than not, will do as their parents. Even if they hated their upbringing, many still end up repeating the cycle of abuse, dysfunction and broken homes. It takes a strong person to do better than their parents, to prosper better than their parents, and to make better choices than their parents made with them.
The bible says it takes wisdom, understanding and knowledge in order to build one's house. There are so many ingredients that are necessary to have a happy home, a peaceful home with everyone intact. It takes hard work to not give in to the negative environment around us and it takes saying 'No' to many things and even saying 'No' to people to achieve this. Sometimes separation is needful for your own sanity and survival.
Our society, our nation and our world are broken and wrought with so much pain. Jesus is the answer for what ails the world. Again, life is about choices. It's up to people to decide what kind of life they want. But let us not be fooled, for what a man sows, he will surely reap, more than he's sown and longer than he's sown it. That's the danger that faces wrong decisions. Take a look at what your life has become. Is it what you want it to be? Why not? What could you have changed to make life better for yourself? Perhaps you're reaping the consequences of good choices and are enjoying the fruits of it. That's the way to live out life.
By the time we are 40 years old, all the bad habits we've nurtured up until then will undoubtedly plague us for the rest of our lives. Bad habits are hard to break, and good habits are hard to break as well. By the time we reach middle age, our behavior, speech, and attitude are engrained in us and we're hard press to stop doing certain things and behaving in certain ways. If we're raising children, they too will follow our lead in the same way, more than not. If we are known for lying, they too will practice lying, and it goes on and on. All of these things impact a city, a state, a nation, and all of the world.
We as humans can break the cycle of dysfunction and a bad upbringing. It will take work, discipline, and a hate for all that is bad to accomplish that. I advise that you be strong and do it!