Sunday, June 18, 2017

Standing Up for the Truth and for What is Right

Truth is timeless. Truth does not differ from one age to another,
from one people to another
from one geographical location to another …
the great all-prevailing Truth stands for time and eternity.”
-- Billy Graham in Quotes, p. 135., c. 2011.

Christians have been taught to turn the other cheek. In the strictest form, this means that when someone hits you, you turn the other cheek and let them hit you again if they are so inclined, but we are not to hit back. For, Christ said, “If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also, and if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well.– (Matthew 5: 40. NIV).  In both these situations Christ was telling us that we must resist the evil that is in this world, and not become part of all the evilness by reciprocating with more evil. In other words, we are to let the world see Christ’s love through our actions as well as our words. Therefore, we are to have good actions. So, we are to show our Christian love by not retaliating in an evil way.

This above verse does not mean, though, that we are not to protect our families, loved ones, and our country when the need arises. For, throughout both the Older Testament/ Covenant and the Newer Testament/Covenant there would be times when the Israelites had to protect themselves from the evil that came against them, and God even helped them to win many battles through their faith and reliance upon Him. Indeed, even in A.D. 70 when the Romans wiped out everyone in Jerusalem, the Israelite people were allowed to fight back, but sadly they just weren’t prepared for the large Roman army and the viciousness of the Roman General who starved hundreds to death during the siege. In this particular case, the Jewish people were desperately outnumbered. Moreover, their destruction and the destruction of Jerusalem, as well as their diaspora had been prophesied by Jesus.

   God sent Jesus to save humans from eternal death. Indeed, Jesus came to save those who would believe on Him and repent of their sins as well as to bring in the Kingdom of God that is based upon the love of God and the love of each other. In fact, our (saved) bodies are temples for the Holy Spirit. For the Apostle Paul wrote, “Or don’t you know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price….– (I Corinthians 6: 19, 20. NLT). So, in honoring our bodies as a temple for the Holy Spirit, we are to try not to sin, try not to hurt our bodies, try not to hurt others, and we are not to reciprocate with more evil against the evil that is often thrown our way. This does not mean, however, that we are not to defend ourselves and our families from would be murderers, from violence, and other kinds of evil. Christ was, though, telling us that we are not to be retaliatory in our dealings with people. In other words, if someone says something hateful and mean to us, we are not to try to find ways to get even or hurt them. We are not to sue someone because we want to get even either. For, being vengeful is not showing Christian love to world. It is not representing Christ and His love to the world when we deliberately try to reciprocate hurt to another. In these cases, we are to show Christ’s love to others, by turning the other cheek.

As Christians, we are to teach others about the love of Christ and the Gospel message of Salvation. We can do this in our daily mentoring of others as well as in specific Active Relational Christian Mentoring of one or more individuals. (See The Three-Strand Cord of Active Relational Christian Mentoring: Women Mentoring Women with Christ at the Center by Vicky Lynn Thomas). But, we also need to be able to understand the words of Christ so that if a specific question like “what does it mean to turn the other cheek” is asked, we can then give a clear answer. Consequently, Christians need to study God’s Word and meditate on the Word as well as pray for clear answers to our own questions about certain verses that we need help in understanding. We need to know the Truth. Otherwise, we can take mistakenly take a single verse out of context and become confused over its meaning.

Unfortunately, confusion is often the case with the “turn the other cheek” Bible verse, for Christians have allowed this one verse in the Bible to dictate how we respond to all the evilness in the world. For in turning our cheek within every area of life, we have allowed ourselves to become so complacent about the evil that surrounds us that we sit by and allow those that are evil and who are doing evil things to quietly and determinedly destroy our country and our very lives. We have taken the biblical verse and phrase “turn the other cheek” to mean something that it was never meant to mean. Consequently, we now do nothing to stop the destructive forces that are so determined to destroy all Christians and our country.

Because we have so identified with the “turn the other cheek” verse in the Bible, we do not even choose to use our voices to project truthful words and biblical verses, which can respond to Satan’s arrows of lies and destruction that he continually throws at us through his people who have hidden agendas and lies to tell. For example, Christians and Americans in general are constantly being bombarded by the media and the liberals with false information, lies, and deceit. But instead, of countermanding these things with the Truth, we all sit back and do nothing even when we recognize that they are lies and deceits. To make matters worse, some Christians are so complacent and focused on turning the other cheek that they do not even teach their children to distinguish between the lies and hidden agendas of deceit bombarding them. They and their children just accept the lies and deceit as part of what is happening in the world, and go on and do nothing as if their freedoms will always exist.

The devil is always trying to twist the Truth to his advantage. In fact, “It is Satan’s purpose to steal the seed of truth from your heart by sending distracting thoughts…”  -- (Billy Graham in Quotes, p. 136., c. 2011). Christians, though, should know that the devil has again usurped and used a particular Bible verse, “turn the other cheek”, for his benefit just as he tried to do so but fortunately failed to accomplish when Jesus was alone in the wilderness. (See Matthew 4: 1-11.). But, if we are to protect our freedoms and our Christian life, we have to not only be discerning and always searching for the Truth, but we have to also step up and tell the Truth, just as Jesus did out in the wilderness when Satan tried to tempt Him. Notice that Jesus did not turn the other cheek and just not say anything. Instead, He clearly told the Satan where and how he was wrong and what the correct use of those Bible verses were.

Righteous Rebuttal

We do not have to sit by and do nothing when we know that someone or some entity is telling a lie. Although, Jesus told us to turn the other cheek, He also knew when it was time to take a stand for righteousness. One example of such a stand, occurred after Jesus made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem before Passover and before His subsequent death on the cross. Shortly after entering Jerusalem Jesus went to the temple. The Bible says: “And He entered the temple and began to drive out those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves; and He would not permit anyone to carry merchandise through the temple. And He began to teach and say to them, ‘Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a House of prayer for all the Nations?’ But you have made it a Robbers’ Den.’”  -- (Mark 10:15-17. NASB).

Notice that Jesus acted upon a situation that was not right. He did not simply say, “Oh well, they will learn someday not to do this,” or “I will just turn my cheek and not say anything.” Instead, Jesus acted. Moreover, He was not sinning when He acted even though He became angry at the money changers. That is because there is a place for righteous anger, just as Jesus became righteously angry with the moneychangers and with those that were selling merchandise in the Temple. This was God’s House, i.e., His Father’s House, and these men were desecrating it.

Christians also have a right to be righteously indignant or angry when we see sin and injustice taking down our neighbors and our country. Why? Because God established Truth, and He established this country on His Truth. This country was created by God. Indeed, God used specific men He had chosen, to establish our Republic which is based and founded upon God’s laws and upon the foundations of the Bible. Obviously, they were not perfect men, for there are no perfect men, but God brought together a unique group of men who had a love for the divine and who wanted to have the freedoms that God had specifically given to humans to be established for us in this nation and for all future Americans. These freedoms would be enumerated in the Constitution and established for them and for future generations through a new concept; a Republic, i.e. a democratic Republic. No, it was not to be a government based solely upon democracy. It was first and foremost to be a Republic that would use democratic principles in keeping the people engaged for the Republic and their freedoms.

 We were given a special gift to be cherished and maintained through our strong reliance upon God and more specifically through Jesus Christ. However, just as the moneychangers in the Bible desecrated God’s temple, people today have desecrated the Republic that God established for those who have believed in and would follow Him and His Son, Jesus Christ. So, just as Christ became righteously angry and threw the moneychangers and merchants out of the temple, we should also become righteously angry and throw the representatives and senators out of congress who are lying to us and who are acting like the Pharisees who established laws for themselves and not for God. We can do this by voting them out. We can do this by holding them accountable. We can do this by not watching the liberal shows on television and thus not giving them the ratings they hope to receive for their lies.

 There are many legitimate ways that Christians and conservatives can stand up for our country before it becomes a pile of rubble the way that the Temple became a pile of rubble in A.D. 70 when the Romans sacked Jerusalem. We can even start with each of us becoming Active Relational Christian Mentors who can mentor those you need our help, who have yet to come to know Christ as their Savior, or who have not learned in school what our Republic stands for. In our Truthful mentoring, we can teach others how to study the Bible and how to stand up for the Word of God. Whether it is helping another woman through our counseling, coaching, teaching, sponsorship, or just by becoming an accountability mentor/friend, we can all be there to teach the Truth when we see and hear the lies that the left is spewing all the time. We must no longer be passive when it comes to our country and the Truth. We must step forward to mentor the Gospel Truth and then to show people how they can use their voice to stand up for the Truth.

Unfortunately, Christian believers have become passive about many things, because we have only heeded and have only adhered to the one verse in the Bible about turning the other cheek. We have failed to read the whole Bible and to understand what righteous anger is. So, when someone or some entity sins, lies, misleads, or hurts others or us we do not do anything. Certainly, we do not have to become retaliatory and we certainly should not deliberately hurt another person, but we do have the right to stand up for the Truth. Unfortunately, instead of using our brains to find legitimate ways of rebuking the lies and deceit, many Christians have just given up and have accepted the lies and deceits.

Remember that prayer is a powerful way to find answers and to receive help from God. We cannot forget to pray or forget to ask for directions and for strength from Christ in every area of our lives, including to ask Him for help for our country and for the hurting people around us. Instead of just turning the other cheek and allowing ourselves to be walked over, let’s turn to God and Jesus Christ for answers and directions. God wants us to tell others about Him and His Son, so it is safe to say, that He wants our country to stand up for His Truth. But, when we fail to teach others about the Gospel message, when we fail to mentor those that are hurting or need help, or when we fail to set straight the lies that are perpetrated upon us or others, we are not doing what God wants us to do. Furthermore, when we fail to stand up for the Gospel message and the name of His Son, Jesus Christ, we are not doing what God wants us to do. We are failing to live the Truth!

What can Christians do besides just accepting the status quo? Well, Christians can write letters. We can call our congressperson and tell them what we think about certain situations. We can become involved in local politics by supporting the conservative agenda. We can volunteer and work to defeat such a program as planned parenthood and by trying to stop our tax dollars from funding abortions. All along the way, we can actively mentor other women in order to empower them to be all they can be for God, themselves, their families and friends. Indeed, there are many many things that Christian women can do to help our country and to teach future generations about their responsibility to protect and defend our country and its freedoms. What about starting a massive nationwide writing campaign to tell our congressmen and congresswomen how we feel about what they are doing or not doing? There are so many ways that we could stand up for what is right, but we have to actually take the time to do so. What happens, though, when we fail to do anything?

The Repercussions of Our Failure to Rebuttal the Lies

By failing to be righteously indignant and by failing to do something to stand up for our rights, we have allowed the liberals, including the media, and now our elected officials to stomp all over our constitutional rights including our right to say Jesus’ name in public. Instead, of voting out of congress people who have failed to stand up for the religious rights of all Americans, we are now adding more and more liberal and ungodly men and women in Congress. We are even adding more and more Muslims to congress all in the name of fairness and political correctness. Thus, we are sending wolves into the hen house to destroy our Republic, because we have bought into the political lie that Islam is a peaceful and caring religion. That is a blatant lie.

Islam is about taking over the world through aggression and Shira law. Muslims have no intention of standing up for the constitution and assimilating into our way of life. They will continue to lay low until the time comes when they can rise up and change our nation through Shira law, and if that fails then take it over through aggression. But we have only ourselves to blame for what is happening to our nation. Why, because we have become complacent and have turned the other cheek. We have succumbed to the lies of political correctness and the new politically correct definitions for other religions like that of Islam, thus giving them the time to grow and plan as they lie in wait to overtake us. Moreover, we have refused to become indignant with falsehoods and have refused to call the liberal media and the liberals out on their lies and their thievery, because we have been taught to view their sinfulness as just part of the political aspect of being Congress people and of part of being in politics. Some people have turned the other cheek so long that they no longer know the Truth even if it is right in front of them. Or perhaps, we know the Truth within our hearts, but we do not want to be politically incorrect by saying something against the lies that are being told. How sad!

What do you think Christ would be doing if He were here on earth at this present time? I believe He would be doing the same thing that He did when He was here in the first century. He would be calling out the liars, thieves, and murders, for what they have done and for what they continue to do to hurt people, just as Christ called out the Sadducees and the Pharisees back then. He would be stepping up and pointing out the dishonesty and the ungodliness of these people and of the people who support them. For, wrong is always wrong, no matter what century we are in.

Yes, when we stand up for the Truth we take a chance that we will be hurt in some way or another, especially when we step forward with truthful and godly words that others do not want to hear. But, we need to stand for something, or we will fall for anything. That “anything” can be devastating too, for it can lead to the destruction of our nation or to the destruction of our right to express our belief in Jesus Christ and God. We must know, though, that even when we are threatened, we need to stand up for Truth and honesty, but above all we need to stand up for the Truth of God’s Word and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For Jesus said, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. ‘For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?’– (Matthew 16: 24-26. NASB).

Taking Up Our Cross and Following Christ 

What does this verse mean? Well, any time that we suffer in some manner or another for identifying with Christ and for spreading the Gospel message, we are taking up our cross for the Lord. In foreign countries, this can mean that someone is persecuted or is actually killed for their belief in Jesus Christ. For us here in America, it may not mean that we have been persecuted or have been afflicted because of our belief in Christ, although we are beginning to see this type of persecution happening more and more often. We are now seeing this type of persecution happening with Christians who own businesses and are then expected to put aside their religious beliefs in order to not be sued or in order not to be shut down by the government or by those who would decide to boycott them. But for most of us, the way that we will suffer for Christ is only when we actually deny ourselves what we really desire in order to do the will of God.

Some of Christians will deny themselves the comforts of America by giving up their cushy lives in order to be missionaries in areas that take them far away from home. Thus, they give up the luxuries that they may desire in order to do the work of Christ. Others will give up lucrative careers in order to do the work of God. Most of us, though, will at the very least have to give up some of our leisure time in order to actively serve and mentor another for the Lord. But all of the things that we give up in order to do work for the Lord and in order to serve Him and others will come under the category of “taking up your cross to follow Christ”. However, there will always be repercussions either personal or community wide if we fail to step forward to serve and to do the will of God. One of those repercussions could be the eternal death of someone for whom we failed to share the Gospel message. Perhaps we failed to be there for someone who really needed our help and they subsequently led a different life than they could have led. Do you think about those people that you have failed to help?  

Another way that we can take up our cross and follow Christ is to stand up for what God has established as a godly nation. We may be abused for telling the Truth, for contacting our representatives, and for contacting newspapers about things that are not right in society, but if we do it in a kind and caring way progress can be made. Remember, how Martin Luther King, Jr. stood up to those who would put black people down. He was peaceful and always looking for ways to use the Words of God to express the truth to those who couldn’t see the truth for the blinders that they had on. This country had made a lot of progress through the example of Martin Luther King Jr. But, when Barack Obama came on the scene, people forgot the words of Martin Luther King Jr. and again turned to violence and lies to get what they wanted. The peacefulness and growth of our country was set back decades due to Obama. The progress that Martin Luther King Jr. had made was overlooked when Obama came on the scene with his ideas of black persecution and continual blame of the white people. Again, we see the repercussions from blatant lies and deceit. No one, including the media, spoke out against these falsehoods.

Christians cannot blame others for where we are in our country. We must blame ourselves for not stepping up and standing up for the Truth. Instead, of standing for the Truth, we have turned the other cheek and allowed our country to slide down the steep slope into an ever-deepening valley of political mud made up of a valueless society that exists on lies and the dreams of the elite who wish to overtake our country and turn it into a communist country. We are to blame for doing nothing.

Yes, we have to use the Bible and God’s words and the truth to rebut the falsehoods perpetrated upon society. It isn’t easy, and one person alone may not be able to do much to stop the progress of these propaganda falsehoods. But if Christians constantly pray, God will hear us and the Holy Spirit will guide us in how we are to speak the Truth. God will show us what all Christians can do to save our nation. But, it all starts with learning to love our neighbors as ourselves. We do not have to be belligerent, hateful, vindictive, or mean when talking to others about our country or God. But, we do have to speak up and tell the Truth. Otherwise, we will have nowhere to live that is free and filled with love. We have to tell the true history of our nation and not accept these made up watered down liberal versions of American history that are now in our children’s school books. We also have to share the Gospel message with others, and we have to do the will of God as directed by the Holy Spirit.

Standing up for Christ and the Gospel

Obviously, we know that standing up for Christ and the Gospel can be dangerous, but doing nothing can be just as dangerous in the long run. The disciples ended up being killed for the Gospel message that the authorities did not want to hear about and did not want others to hear. Just as there were back in the first century, there are Christians today throughout the world that are being killed or harassed for their belief in Christ. Yet, we here in America sit back with very little persecution at present. Unfortunately, we are still willing to accept the possibility that socialism, or worse communism, will take over the government of the United States by doing nothing to speak up for the Truth about socialism and communism. Instead, we have to stop the college professors glorified propaganda of socialism and communism by taking our children out of those colleges or not paying for them to attend them in the first place. If we do not do anything to stop the onward roll of lies and propaganda we will reap what we have not sown; weeds which results in persecution. Indeed, the insidious goals and agendas of the Universities and Government agencies to willingly promote the lack of free speech by shutting down the opposing views of conservatives or by shutting down those people who don’t adhere to what they believe in results in the loss of many freedoms.

The first loss of freedom is the right of people to express themselves, or our right to free speech. The next loss of freedom will be the freedom of religion or the loss of our right to worship God and Jesus Christ. Then the next loss of freedom will be the loss of the right of people to make a living doing by doing what they want to do, as the government through socialism and then communism will tell people what they have to do. If we do not want these things to happen, we must rebut them with words and writings and through what is left of the democratic process.

Sadly though, Christians who give great amounts of money to certain educational institutions do not even pull their children from the colleges and universities that have become liberal cesspools of propaganda and who trample upon the constitution even when they realize that their children are marching against their own hard fought for freedoms and especially against the freedom of speech. Just as importantly, many Christians do not tell their children that they cannot go to a liberal college for at least the first two years of their college life so they can be grounded in the truth of a conservative college first. Instead, most parents allow their children to choose where they want to go college based upon where their friends are going or based upon the fun times that they have heard that they can have at that university.

There is another reason that certain parents will go into great debt to send their child to a prestigious college or university. That reason is the parent’s ever-present need for prestige and being able to tell others that their child has graduated from some ivy league or prestigious college or university. Unfortunately, most parents fail to think about the type of education or type of professors that will be teaching/ brainwashing their children before they agree to a particular college for their child. But it is very important for Christians to think about and first pray about the college that they will invest their money in for the education of their child. Christians should also teach their child to pray to God for guidance in choosing the college that will give them the best well-rounded education possible.

Christians have many choices to make when standing up for God and for the truth. From where we go to church, to where we will send our children to college the choices are enormous. Then we add to all to those choices the decisions or lack of decisions that we make in regard to standing up for the Truth in all aspects of life and in doing what is right for our nation, and the choices can become overwhelming. This is where we should turn to God and do not allow the devil to overwhelm us.

We are to pray for direction, guidance, and help. We are to ask God how we can tell others the Truth, how we can stand up for the future of our nation, how we can stand up for Christ, and what we can do to strengthen our freedoms for now and for future generations. But we have to take the time to pray. Then we have to take the time to do what God has shown us that we can do. So, whether it is mentoring an acquaintance, sharing the Gospel with a stranger, or writing to your congress people, we all have a responsibility to serve God and His Kingdom every day. You can do it! You can be that Christian mentor for others. You can be that dedicated prayer warrior. You can stand up for the Truth in regard to our country and in doing what is right. We just have to give up a little of our leisure time for God, neighbors, friends, family, and country. You can become an Active Relational Christian Mentor and become a serving Christian!

Indeed, The Three-Strand Cord of Active Relational Christian Mentoring by Vicky Lynn Thomas is a good book that will help you find ways to stand up for the Truth. This book will also show you how to become excited about Christian mentoring and how to find ways of incorporating mentoring into your life. You can order the book from Amazon, Barnes and Nobel, Google play, iTunes, etc.   

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

For We are Christ's Workmanship Created for Good Works

As a true “born-again” Christian, do you look for ways to help people? Do you even look at the people around you and notice their needs? Most of us don’t look, but if we actually looked, we might discover that some people are depressed, some are sick, and some need emotional support during a time when they simply can’t figure out what to do. Others may just need a friend or a Christian ear that will listen with compassion and then be willing to respond to their need with wisdom, care, support, direction, and yes, with ideas and suggestions. Most importantly, they may need to hear “the truth” within any situation. In fact, sometimes those we encounter and really look at may have an even greater need, for they may be searching for “the truth” that can actually fill that God-shaped space within their souls. In other words, they are searching for that ultimate truth, i.e., the Saving Grace of Jesus Christ and the love of God, which they are in need of recognizing and accepting in order to be whole and complete. It is our responsibility as Christians who are under the direction of the Holy Spirit to help others find the Savior, Jesus Christ.

Indeed, all Christians have been given the responsibility of helping their fellow humans. In other words, we have the responsibility of looking at those around us to determine how we can help another person as well as the responsibility of sharing the Gospel message in order for others to find Christ. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.– (Ephesians 2: 10. NASB). This means that God has prepared us to be able to share the Gospel message which we can do through doing the good works which God has prepared us to do. But, in order to determine what kind of help or information that another person needs, we have to look at that person and then listen to her to determine her needs. However, in a world that is fast paced and at times overwhelming, Christians often fail to really look at the other person, let alone observe her needs or even consider that we may have been gifted with some information, talent, wisdom, etc. that could help her.

Christians should be on the lookout and willing perform some good work that would help another woman or empower her to be more than she is. Sadly, Christians today are so overcome with daily living and yes, to a certain degree we are overcome with selfishness, so much so, that we fail to look closely at the other woman and her needs, let alone are willing to coach, support, teach, counsel, or spiritually guide this person. Some Christian women can even become an accountability partner or just a good friend for another woman, if they are truly on the lookout for a woman who needs an accountability partner or friend. But, how can Christian women go about doing all these things when there is so little time in their very busy days?

Well, one way that Christian women can fit helping other women into their busy days is to become Active Relational Christian Mentors. Becoming a Christian mentor to another woman does not have to take a great deal of time unless you want it to. Just 20 minutes a week is all it takes to sometimes lift the spirit of another woman, answer questions, or counsel and give spiritual guidance to someone in need. But in order to reach out and help another woman, we first have to look at or observe the other woman, i.e., we must recognize that she exists and that she has a need, and only then can we reach out to develop a relationship with her. Then, we can speak into the life of that woman through many different avenues or topics as we befriend and fellowship with her. But we first have to be willing to step forward to listen, befriend, and mentor another woman in order to empower her so that she can be all that she is meant to be for God, herself, her family, and her friends. Are you willing to observe and then step forward to help?

Christ as Our Example

During Christ’s three-year ministry, Jesus Christ was always looking at the people around Him as He observed them in order to help those who had a need. In fact, the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, are full of miracles that Christ preformed for those who were less fortunate or for those who were hurting in some way or another. It wasn’t just the person who was blind that Christ helped and healed. And it wasn’t just those that were physically sick that Christ reached out to help or to show them the path to redemption through the love of God. Christ observed people everywhere that He went and He healed emotional and psychological problems as well as those that were demon possessed. Sometimes, people were brought to Jesus for healing, while at other times, Jesus found the person within the crowd that needed His help.

Although, the writers of the New Covenant/Testament wrote down many of the miracles that Christ performed, they could not write down every incident or record every person that Jesus helped. In fact, the Apostle John wrote at the end of his book: “Jesus did many other things as well, If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.”  -- (John 21: 25. NIV). For, Christ was engaged in helping people in many different ways and in doing miracles even when His disciples were not around to record them. He also performed so many miracles and helps that the writers of the Gospels had to pick and choose which ones to include in their Gospel. Of course, they chose which ones to include with the help of the Holy Spirit.

Christ had a greater purpose within all the miracles that He performed than in just physically and emotionally healing an individual, for He had been sent by God, His Father, to show all people God’s love and to bless those who would believe that He is the Son of God and those who believe that He had come to save them from their sins with eternal life. Indeed, Jesus Christ came to not only help them in the here and now, but He came to bless them with a future of eternal life, if they believed on Him as the Son of God. In believing on Him, people then would forever have their souls set free from the destruction of eternal death upon their physical death from this world. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”  -- (John 3: 16. NASB)

But, in order to get their attention and to develop a relationship with those who truly needed His help and forgiveness of their sins, Christ sometimes had to first heal their physical and emotional problems. He had to observe and listen as people explained their needs. Once their physical and emotional problems were healed, Christ could then meet their spiritual needs. However, to meet their spiritual needs, Christ would first start with the miracles of healing which could open the person’s eyes for their need for God’s forgiveness and love. This could then lead to their continued relationship with Him. Through the miracles He performed, Christ could show and tell individuals that He was indeed the Son of God and that they had need of more than physical and emotional health; they also needed a spiritual life with God starting with the repentance and forgiveness of their sins.

Just as Christ looked at the whole person, Christian women have to first see the whole woman and see her needs before we can speak into another woman’s life with wisdom, knowledge, support, direction, coaching, counseling, and yes, with spiritual guidance. Only after we have befriended another woman and have shown her that we can be trustworthy and authentic, will we have a chance to share the Gospel message and tell her about the saving grace of Salvation that Christ wants to offer her. But if we only look out for and live only for ourselves, we will fail to see or fail to reach out to help another woman. In our selfishness, we will never get the chance to show the love of God to another woman the way that Christ wants us to do so. But if we look with our eyes and our heart and follow the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we can selflessly help and empower another woman to be all that she can be. “For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.– (I Corinthians 3: 9. NASB). As God’s workers are you planting the seeds of love, truth, and the Gospel message in the field God has given you to tend? Are you filling God’s building with followers of Christ?

How Did Christ Show Compassion and Love?

The New Covenant/Testament is full of true stories of how Jesus Christ in His everyday life truly looked at individuals and their needs (remember that Christ and the disciples also walked everywhere they went while most of us today drive a car, so Christ could actually look into the eyes of those He encountered.). Furthermore, Jesus Christ didn’t just pass people by or let them go on hurting, or wait for someone else to help that person if they could. Indeed, Jesus was just as busy or more so than we are today, because Jesus had a limited amount of time to address the needs of others. He also explained the path of salvation to the people He spoke to in the short period of time before He was killed on the cross, resurrected, and then ascended back into heaven to be with His Father. In fact, Jesus left the earth to go back to heaven at the age of 33, whereas there are many Christian women today who are older than Christ was at the time of His ascension. Fortunately, most of us have been given long lives today in order to be of service to the Lord and others. So, what are you doing for the Lord today? Are you in service to the Lord and to others who may need to hear about Christ and salvation? Are you showing compassion and love to other women who may need your help? Are you reaching out in service to God?

Let’s take a few minutes to look at some of the ways that Christ looked at and observed the needs of others. For, even as Christ was searching for the men who would be His disciples, Christ was observing all the people that He met on His travels. He was looking for men who had a heart for the truth and who wanted to love the Lord. One such man was Matthew. Now Matthew (also called Levi) was a tax collector and tax collectors were considered by other Jews to be some of the most vile and sinful people at that time, because they worked for the Romans by collecting the Roman tax from the people. They also usually stole from Jewish people by padding the taxes that were due and then keeping the extra for themselves. So, Matthew was truly a sinner in many ways, but he was also considered a thief for taking money from the Jews to line his own pockets. Yet, Christ saw that he not only had a need for salvation like everyone else, but Christ also saw that deep-down Matthew had a heart that could be saved. Christ wanted Him as one of His disciples. So, the scriptures tell us:

As Jesus went on from there, He saw a man called Matthew, sitting in the tax collector’s booth; and He said to him, ‘Follow Me’ And he got up and followed Him.”  -- (Matthew 9: 9 NASB). But it is in the book of Luke that we get a few more details about Jesus calling Matthew to be one of His disciples. Luke says, “After that He went out and noticed a tax collector named Levi (i.e., Matthew) sitting in the tax booth and He said to him, ‘Follow Me’. And he left everything behind, and got up and began to follow Him. And Levi (i.e., Matthew) gave a big reception for Him (i.e., Jesus Christ) in his house; and there was a great crowd of tax collectors and other people who were reclining at the table with them.” When asked by the Pharisees and their scribes why He was eating and drinking with tax collectors, Jesus said, “I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”  -- (Luke 5: 27-29, 31. NASB).

Here we see Christ looking at the people’s souls and wanting to help them understand their need for salvation. In order to help them, Jesus not only had compassion on them, but He was willing to take a little time to sit down with those people and fellowship with them so that they could come to understand what they really needed in life. In fact, “Jesus was going through all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness. Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore, beseech the Lord of the Harvest to send out workers into His harvest.’” – (Matthew 9: 36-38. NASB).

The Lord of the Harvest is God, and Christ wanted the disciples to pray to God that God would send out even more workers, or more people to proclaim the truth of God’s mercy and grace. Christ wanted the disciples to also have compassion and love for all people and to be willing to reach out to tell them about the Kingdom of God and of their need for Salvation through the forgiveness of their sins by Jesus Christ. As true Christians, we are to observe the needs of others and then be willing to reach out in compassion, Christian love, and kindness to help other women any way that we can, which may also include sharing the Gospel message of Salvation with them.

Showing Compassion and Love to the Samaritan Woman

There are many other examples, besides this one of Matthew’s found within the Scriptures; examples of Christ observing and then out of compassion healing or helping another person understand the path to Salvation. Although, I can’t go into all of them today, I will mention a couple of examples. One was the Samaritan woman who came to the well while Jesus was resting from a long journey. There at the well, Jesus observed and befriended her when others deliberately shunned her because of her immoral life-style.

In this particular situation, Jesus and His disciples had traveled through Samaria and had come to the city well outside the city of Samaria. Being tired from His journey, Jesus sat down at the well while sending His disciples into town to buy food. Soon there came a woman to draw water. She came at a time during the day when the other women were no longer coming to draw water. Upon observing her, “Jesus said to her, ‘Give Me a drink.’ … Therefore, the Samaritan woman said to Him, ‘How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?’ (For the Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) Jesus answered and said to her, ‘If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, Give Me a drink, you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”  -- (John 4: 7, 9, 10. NASB). Then Jesus explained what living water was and told her all about her life.

Actually, the Samaritan woman was the first person to whom Jesus directly stated that He was indeed the Messiah who had been prophesied to come. For, “The woman said to Him, ‘I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called the Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us.’ Jesus said to her, ‘I who speak to you am He.’”  -- (John 25, 26. NASB). When she heard that He was the Messiah she ran and told all the town people to come meet Christ.

Just by having compassion for her and being willing to speak to her when others shunned her, Christ was able to tell her about Salvation and Living Water. Her whole life was changed, because Christ spoke to her and told her about the Kingdom of God. She learned the truth and was saved. Can you share the Gospel message with another woman? Sometimes, though, like in the situation with the Samaritan woman, we have to be willing to listen to the other person and to see her needs before we can speak into her life. We also have to be willing, like Christ was, to reach out to those who are hurting.

Do you have compassion for other women? Do you notice their distress and dispiritedness? If so, what can you do to help another woman? Well, the answer is really simple. You can be one of the workers that Christ has beseeched from the Lord of the harvest. You can observe the needs of other women and can take the time to befriend another woman who may need your knowledge, expertise, spiritual guidance, counseling, or coaching. Certainly, as followers of Christ we are expected to do more than just live our lives whichever way we want. Sometimes, we have to step out of our self-centered box or the comfort zone that we have built for ourselves and be willing to reach out to help another woman. Christian women can reach out and do their part through Active Relational Christian Mentoring (ARCM).

Mentoring another woman is really easy, if we are willing to reach out and befriend the woman. Indeed, every woman can use another friend whether she thinks so or not. In fact, most women can name many acquaintances, but few are lucky if they can at least name one woman as their friend. That is because in this day and age, we seldom take the time to develop relationships built upon trust, authenticity, compassion, care, concern and love for the other person. Instead, we are all running and running trying to get so many things accomplished, while actually getting few if any important life changing things accomplished as we deal with the minutia of our lives. Certainly, befriending and mentoring another woman in Christian care and concern is one of those important things in life that we can do. Obviously, getting to share the Gospel with her, or if she already is a child of God’s, to be able to support, counsel, coach, etc., her, is a worthy eternal endeavor.

Not Every Act of Compassion or Mentoring Will Lead to Immediate Salvation or Even Appreciation

God created a longing within the hearts of humans for the truth and for a relationship with Christ. However, God also gave each of us free will to choose whether or not to seek that relationship with Christ. The Holy Spirit is the One, though, who takes the initiative to speak to a person’s heart about God and Salvation. Although, it is the voice of the Holy Spirit Who speaks to this longing within a person, it is still up to the individual person to recognize Him and then ask Christ to come into their heart. Unfortunately, many people will still refuse to recognize the Holy Spirit and Christ. Instead, they push the Holy Spirit’s voice away.

It is the many difficulties that are allowed to enter our individual lives within this fallen world that should together be the impetus for each person to open up to God and to want His love and help. But not even some of the greatest difficulties in life will lead a misguided and hurting person to recognizing Christ as their Savior. That is because we have a stubborn selfish heart that does not want to acknowledge that God is greater than us. Many do not want to call Christ Lord and so refuse to do so. They have instead learned to love this world and believe the lies that the world and Satan perpetrates upon them. Sadly, even when Christ is the One who shows compassion and love for another person, and even though Christ, the Son of God, sacrificed Himself for that person upon the cross, an individual can still refuse to turn to Him.

One prime example of the healed individual refusing to turn to Christ for Salvation is found in the biblical Scripture within the book of John. This true story began when at this particular time, Christ went up to Jerusalem where He encountered a man who had been unable to walk for years. The Scripture tells us: “Now there is in Jerusalem by the sheep gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porticoes. In these lay a multitude of those who were sick, blind, lame, and withered [waiting for the moving of the waters; for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool and stirred up the water; whoever then first, after the stirring up of the water, stepped in was made well from whatever disease with which he was afflicted.]– (John 5: 2-5. NASB).

There was a man lying there by the pool who had been ill for nearly forty years, and he had been trying to get into the pool when the waters were stirred. But because he could not walk, others always got into the pool before him. “When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him. ‘Do you wish to get well? The sick man answered Him, ‘Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up….’Jesus said to him, ‘Get up, pick up your pallet and walk.’ Immediately the man became well and picked up his pallet and began to walk.– (John 5: 6-8. NASB).

Notice that the man did not answer that he wanted to get well. Instead, playing the victim, he replied that he had no one to put him into the pool when the water was stirred up. You have probably met people like this man, who in some ways wanted your help, but the help that they needed was not the kind of help they wanted. This happens in Christian mentoring too. Some people do not want to be mentored, while others want to be mentored but do not want to know the truth. As Christian mentors, you will probably encounter a similar situation in which the mentee wants the physical or emotional help, but does not want spiritual help of any kind. However, we cannot let one person’s refusal to understand the truth, keep us from reaching out to mentor another woman who desperately wants to know more about Christ, or who is willing to listen to what the mentor is saying or trying to do to spiritually help them. We also cannot be hurt because the woman refuses to understand or accept the gift of Salvation. We are just to do what God and the Holy Spirit has asked us to do. For, maybe we are just planting the seeds in the field, and someone else will come along and water those seeds to get them to grow.

The above story doesn’t end there, though. For, after He healed the man, Jesus immediately slipped away, never telling the healed man who He was. However, the man had been healed on the Sabbath day, and he had indeed picked up his pallet to carry it with him, which was also considered to be work that could not be done on the Sabbath. If the Pharisees found out about Jesus healing this man on the Sabbath or of Jesus causing this man to work on the Sabbath by picking up his pallet to carry it, the Pharisees would have a couple of more things to add to their list of things against Christ. Was this man going to protect Christ from those who were trying to find reasons to kill Him? Would this man be appreciative for His healing? Or was he more interested in telling the Pharisees that Christ had healed him on the Sabbath? We cannot know the thoughts of this man; however, Christ knew this man’s heart, which is one of the reasons that Christ chose him to heal out of all the other people who were lying around the pool who also needed to be healed. Christ knew what this man would do.

A little bit later, when Jesus went to the Temple, Jesus again saw the man that He had healed now within the temple (The man had probably gone there to present himself to the priest as a healed man as required by the law.). So, it was in the temple that Jesus again had the opportunity to speak to this man. Knowing the man’s heart, Jesus said to the man “Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.” – (verse 14). It was like Jesus knew that this man was going to sin and was telling him that he should not sin or worse could happen to him. But instead of being appreciative, and saying that he would try not to sin again, the man went away and immediately told the Jews, i.e. the Pharisees, that it was Jesus Who had healed him. The Jews now had at least two more reasons within the law to persecute Jesus. Jesus, though, knew this would happen.

We can see from what the man did after he saw Jesus the second time, that this man’s soul had not changed with Christ’s miracle, even though he was now physically well. This healed man still harbored some type of resentment, hatefulness, anger, or disillusion in his heart, because he was not joyful, happy, or willing to recognize that he was a sinner. So instead of taking Christ’s words to heart and trying not to sin, when he found out it was Jesus who had healed him, he went directly to the Pharisees to let them know who had healed him and who had caused him to pick up his pallet on the Sabbath. Additionally, it is interesting that even though this man had lived with this disability for years, the fact that he had been healed seemed to be considered by him to be just another occurrence in his life, or in this case, a healing that he deserved. Most people, though, would have had a changed heart from just receiving this healing as a miracle, and they would probably have thought more about the words that Jesus had spoken to him; words about not sinning rather than immediately going to the authorities to tattle on Jesus.

Most people would have also praised the person who had given him such a miracle. They would have been joyous and thoughtful about their status change in life. In addition, most people would have wanted to know more about this man who was compassionate and willing to take the time to help them. But, not this man. Moreover, this paralytic man was not spiritually redeemed that day. Instead, he seemed to not want to know anything about sinfulness, the kingdom of God, or Salvation. Certainly, he did not want to address the idea of sinfulness and repentance in his own life. How do you think you have acted if you could suddenly walk after 38 years of not being able to walk?

Sadly, those who reject Christ as their Savior will someday bear the full penalty of their sins unless they begin to think upon Christ and decide to weigh His Words for their life. The Bible doesn’t tell us, but let us hope that this man began to think about Christ and the miracle he received so that at a later point in time he may have been able to come to Christ and ask Him into his heart. But, whatever the case, God was able to use this man and his healing on the Sabbath to further the pursuit of Christ by the Pharisees that would eventually lead to Christ’s crucifixion on the cross for the sins of the world. God had a plan for Christ to die for the sins of the world on the cross and then to arise the third day conquering eternal death, and this man fit into God’s plan.

Obviously, our all-knowing God, knew that this man would not be spiritually redeemed that day. But that did not stop Christ’s compassion for his situation or stop Christ from reaching out to help this man. What a wonderful example Christ set for all His followers. Through this one example we learn that we are to reach out to those who need our help even if we feel that they may not appreciate of our help as much as we would want them to. Furthermore, we are to reach out to serve others even though they may not come to understand or accept the Gospel message.

We are simply to do the work that God has given each of us to do for the Kingdom of God. This means that we must always listen to the Holy Spirit and reach out to help others whom the Spirit leads us to. For, we cannot read another woman’s mind, nor can we know what the cumulative effect that our simple kindness will have on her heart down the road.  We are to just follow the directions of Christ and reach out in Christian love to help and mentor others whom the Holy Spirit leads us to help. Although, we may not see the immediate response that we desire, the mentored and helped woman may later become appreciative as the Holy Spirit draws her near to Christ, just like the Samaritan Woman in the previous story. In fact, it is not up to us to decide who will and who won’t benefit from our Christian love and help. It is, however, our responsibility to reach out to actively help and mentor others in Christian love for the Lord.

Just as importantly, we are to never give up doing what we were created to do simply because we did not get the results that we thought we should get. We are to listen to other women; listen for their hurts and needs and then be willing to step forward to help in any way that we can. More importantly, we are to share the love of Christ and the Gospel message if that is what the Holy Spirit wants us to do. Remember, that you can change the world for Christ one person at a time. You can do it! You can become an Active Relational Christian Mentor!

“Do not look out only for yourselves. Look out for the good of others also” (1 Corinthians 10:24 NCV).