The more I write about my struggle with depression, the more the emails come to me from others who fight this battle. It’s as if we stay in the shadows and suffer silently – not wanting others to see the pain. They might think that we are weak and not strong enough in the Lord.
The words written to me from others bring me to tears. I can empathize and hurt right along with them. I try to be careful in my responses to these emails. Sometimes just saying “I love you and Jesus loves you more” is enough.
The Lord has blessed many of us with a precious saint whom we call “Chappy” – short for Chaplain Bill Herrmann. He has the gift of showing mercy like no one I have ever met. He hurts with those who are hurting. He prays with those who are in need of prayer. This man is truly salt and light as Jesus called us to be.
Chappy hurts so much with us, that it usually brings him to tears. He is never judgmental, but always uplifting. He is a gift from Jesus to hurting hearts. I don’t know if he understands just how much he means to so many of us. His heart is so tender – he is probably in tears as he reads this.
Why do Christians hurt their own?
This is a topic that most just sweep under the carpet – too hard to talk about, I guess. But brethren – we do need to talk about it. This behavior leaves deep wounds and scars.
Why do you think that our Lord Jesus spoke so much of love and caring?
“By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another”(John 13:35).
Sounds like it is extremely important to the Lord that we have love for one another; and here He is speaking of love between the brethren. It is so important to Him, that he makes the point that the world will know that we belong to Him by how we treat one another.
The love of many shall wax cold
“Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come” (Matthew 24:9-14).
These are hard words to read, brethren. But they are the Words of our Lord Jesus. This passage of Scripture is a warning to us of things that will come to pass in the end times. I believe we are there. We must be on our guard to keep our hearts soft and pliable; forgiving and merciful.
We don’t know what a brother or sister in Christ is enduring
Even when we are treated harshly by another Christian, I believe that it is so important to immediately forgive. Forgiveness for the Christian should come as naturally as breathing. But we are still battling this sinful flesh, so sometimes it takes a bit longer when a wound is very deep. I know that our Lord is so pleased with us when we make the decision to forgive. We must remember that the person who offends us is most likely battling their own scars and wounds. Thinking about that will help us to forgive.
We are not Jesus, so “forgetting” an offense is sometimes impossible. Because of this, it is important to pray for the person whenever you think of the hurt. It may be that you need to pray for this person every day. It is very hard to remain upset with someone for whom you are praying.
We all bring baggage into the Kingdom of God
I remember the night I was saved. In the days that followed I thought to myself that there would never be problems with my brothers and sisters in Christ. Those were the thoughts of a baby Christian. As we mature in the Lord, we see that all of us have brought our painful experiences into the Kingdom with us. A lot of the brethren are broken from past hurts. We are far from perfect, but we love and serve a Perfect God! Hopefully, we mature in Him and become more and more like Jesus.
This song has always been precious to me:
We’re almost there, brethren! We must finish the race set before us. God, please help us to endure to the end!