encourage one another daily so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness

Everybody Needs Somebody

My 16 year old daughter believes she can do anything.  She decided in December to graduate high school a year early.  To accomplish this, she had to take 11 college credits in addition to her normal classes.  She was confident she could handle it.

About a month ago, we found out she had gotten behind.   VERY behind.   The further behind she got, the less she did.  She just ignored the problem and stopped trying. The consequences were mounting and one day we all realized she would not be graduating high school.

See, she had kept up a great façade.  But now, she couldn’t pretend anymore.

She had been found out.  She knew that she messed up.  She had no choice but to ask for help from her professor.   It was SO difficult for her to ask for grace.  But we insisted.

She was given a chance to re-take a test.  There was again hope of graduating.  But later that afternoon, as she looked at all the work ahead, she just wanted to give up, AGAIN!

So we decided to rally as a family.  We sat with her while she was working.  We encouraged,  prodded, checked grades, made her get tutoring, and when she got distracted we called her back to the task at hand.  She would try to convince us she could handle it on her own, and it wasn’t that bad.

But we never stopped helping her.  We wouldn’t let her ignore the problem again.  Eventually, other people began praying and encouraging her.  Soon the whole church was helping.

This week she passed her college classes…with good grades!

It wasn’t easy for any of us.  We often focused on her failure.  She often got angry at our pushing.  We all apologized often and forgave quickly. And we learned what it takes to ask for help, and to give it.

This reminds me of how we relate to God.

We know we deserve consequences and judgment is coming.  But sometimes, we want to ignore sin.  Yet, we have grace available to us, we have Jesus, we have the Holy Spirit, and God’s grace.  But, it can be hard to repent and get help.

Even after we do, sometimes we slip back into old patterns.  We ignore the Holy Spirit and tell ourselves and others we can handle life, as we are playing around with things that once held our hearts so tightly.  Hopefully, there is someone to lovingly commit to walk with us as we battle temptation. Someone there to sit with us and call us back to loving Jesus.

Maybe you know someone who is struggling with sin.  Maybe they have kept up a really good façade.  Maybe YOU are struggling with sin, and are struggling to keep up the façade. I encourage you to engage in the battle. Call out for mercy. Be brutally honest with your friends.  Let someone in to help you.  It’s what the body of Christ is made for!  Grace is only an ask away.

“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” Hebrews 3:13

Laura Faltynski

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