As a believer in Christ, you would hope that everyone you love and come in contact with would share your same faith and belief in Christ. You want everyone to know the joy and love of Christ as you do. But what happens when they don’t? What do you do when your loved ones—that once knew Christ—no longer serve him.
I am living in this very moment. A particular family member has informed me that they are not Christian, as they believe that Jesus is not the only way. What really brought on the emotional tug to write this post is when I spoke to her—how should I put this nicely—intimate partner.
This family member believes that their sexual life is personal and is none of anyone’s business, and I 100% agree. However, Galatians 6:1-2 states, “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ,” and as a believer, it is my responsibility to do my best to live by the word. I am far from perfect, and I’ve missed plenty of shots, but the conviction of God came over me so heavily that I couldn’t hold my tongue.
This particular beau admitted the day before, I spoke to him that he was Christian and a prayer warrior. I paid it no mind, knowing that he was sleeping with this particular family member. But the next morning, as I was listening to the word of God on television, conviction fell on me. In my silence, I had condoned sin. If I call myself a believer and a leader in Christ, I must speak out against sin. Please note that in my worldly days, honey, I sinned. I was a big fornicator, and even when I came into the body of Christ, I fell a couple of times until I was able to abstain for years before marriage. So, this was by no means to find fault, but to simply plant the seed and allow the Holy Spirit to water it.
I pray to God to give me an opportunity to speak with him privately, and God allowed it. I asked the gentleman if I could have a moment of his time, and he said yes. Before I went into the conversation, I had to confirm some things. So, I asked him if he was a Christian since he mentioned he was a prayer warrior. He said yes. I asked if he believed in Jesus Christ. Yes, he responded. I asked if he believed in the Bible. Yes, again. So, I first apologized that as his sister in Christ, I did not say anything sooner and that in me not speaking sooner, it gave the appearance that I was okay with him fornicating.
I asked this young man what was his stance on sex before marriage. He beat around the bush for a while until I informed him that I am not perfect. I had sex before marriage, but as my faith grew in Christ, I was able to abstain for several years before marriage. I wasn’t here to judge him but simply plant a seed and allow God or someone else to do the watering. He finally admitted that he believes sex should wait until marriage. I let him know that it’s our job to hold each other accountable and be an example to unbelievers. Surprisingly, he took the information well and thanked me. He said it’s generally the ones that don’t care that doesn’t say anything, but the ones that do care for you, speak up and correct you. I was glad that the word was received.
So my intent was that the conversation would remain between us and that God will begin to work on his heart, and he would stop fornicating. Later on that very day, the family member asked what my conversation was about, and I was 100% honest. I felt as if this family member was offended—based on tone and demeanor—and informed me that my belief is my belief, which will not dictate their sex life.
Psst, that was fine with me. All I do is give the word and allow the word of God to work. But, I was hurt as I could envision this particular family member hurting from something and in need of healing. Why does everything have to be defensive with the person? Or if things aren’t going their way, then they react instead of responding. I want my relationship with this person to be better and meaningful, but I’m not going to put my faith and beliefs aside to do so.
So back to my question of, how do you love someone from afar? Well, this is what I plan on doing.
1. Pray and fast
Mark 9:29 states, “And he said to them, ‘This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer,’” So, I have to pray and fast for my loved one and pray that they come back into the family of believers.
2. Speak up when needed
When you see sin, speak up. Never force it or be rude about it. Simply give the word of God, with supporting scriptures if needed, and allow the Holy Spirit to do the rest.
3. Trust that God’s will, will be done in their life
After praying, fasting, and speaking when needed.
Everything is easier said than done but when you take the first step and continue to make progress, it get’s easier with time. No one said that this walk would be easier, but it sure is worth it. So pray for my strength in the Lord and my family member as I pray for you.