Is There Redemption After a Major Screw-up?
My husband sang and gave a brief testimony in church this morning. He’s come a looonnnnggg way from that awful day back in June when he was arrested. He’s been in two different 12-step recovery programs and had 8 months (and still going) of therapy. He’s confessed his sordid tale to his therapist, a pastor friend, two sponsors, another pastor, and several really good friends. But those were “safe” shares.
We learned very quickly that redemption would not come from a lot of our extended families, even though they all profess to be Christians. And there were plenty of acquaintances that cut us loose in a heartbeat. I have no doubt that had his sin, mistake, failing–whatever you want to call it–not been printed in the newspaper, but had been confessed to quietly, people would have been kinder and more compassionate. The biggest issue for one family member was not the sin, it was the embarrassment. I learned an important lesson; family will forgive a lot, but the biggest sin you can commit with most families is to embarrass them; that they will not forgive.
Our good friends went to our church today to support my husband, and me. They are so precious to us. They believe in redemption. The sad reality is that most Christians don’t, unless it’s for themselves. The “church” has done a lot in the way of categorizing sins–some are not so bad and some are too horrendous to be forgiven. The plain dang truth is that every single one of us has the capacity to do and think and say awful, horrible things. Could you withstand having your worst sin printed up in the newspaper?
Jesus spent an great deal of time hanging out with people who were the dregs of society in His day. He was loving and compassionate, but never held back the truth. He wasn’t a sissy when it came to sin, but he knew that those souls were hurting in some way and needed His forgiveness to put their lives back in order. The religious leaders hated Him for that.
Choose your camp–Jesus or Pharisee