Does God Need ME to Correct This Person?

Scripture Religion 3d Faith Glasses Bible Book

We’ve all been there. We look at someone else’s life, we see an issue that might need speaking to, and we experience an urge to be the one to bring it up – “for their own good”, of course.

I’ve learned to stifle these urges, for the most part.

One of the most encouraging possible relational truths is that whatever correction is needed in a person’s life, God is already on top of it. He hasn’t missed it; he doesn’t need to be notified. In fact, he saw it millennia before it came up.

Sometimes God doesn’t even use a human speaker. I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve kept my mouth shut about someone else’s rough edges and, months or years later, heard the person speak of working on that very matter themselves, without any involvement from me. God laid it their heart all on his own.

And that’s when I’m right. Sometimes I’m wrong about what I’m seeing. Or, what I’m seeing is the result of deeply rooted habits or wounds that would change the conversation entirely if I knew them.

If the person doesn’t seem to be changing, there are a few possible explanations:

1) God is waiting for a moment when they’re ready to hear correction;

2) God is grooming the right speaker with the right words;

3) The person isn’t listening to God;

4) Change is slow. (Or has change been fast with you? I’m afraid it hasn’t been with me.)

Whatever the case, I find I’m rarely the person God uses – or nearly not as often as I’d volunteer myself.

Some of that’s just simple math. If we assume every person has twenty mature, Scripturally literate people in their lives that they trust to speak difficult truth, just how many times should I expect to be the one out of twenty?

It’s also worth mentioning that I’m often just ooking to eliminate an inconvenience on myself (the ripple effects of their behavior) rather than honestly seeking to help.

So I don’t say much anymore. Instead, I trust God to have eyes to spot what’s important. Like a pair of colored glasses, he sees things I don’t. And what I do see, he sees differently.

Besides, don’t I have enough sanctification to work on in my own life?

Even a fool is considered wise when he keeps silent, discerning when he seals his lips. (Prov. 17:28)

 

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15 thoughts on “Does God Need ME to Correct This Person?

  1. I agree with you! It takes a whole lot of trust and relationship to get to the point where we can speak the truth in love to one another. Far too often we try to bypass all that work, bypass the work in our own hearts, bypass building trust with one another, and we just leap to the part about speaking truth.

    That said, I still have to speak in favor of getting to that point, of building relationships, of plain speaking, of getting bold. To love one another is to say things like, “wear your coat,” or “What’s up? You look like you slept on your face.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, it depends on the depth of what you’re asking – just offering comfort is never out of place. But “that thing that’s been driving you crazy about that person” is a different pay grade and filled with booby traps more often than not. Something serious merits guidance from the Holy Spirit and probably just a lot of tongue-holding.

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  2. There is nothing worse than walking around all day meeting people, then going to the restroom and discovering you had a booger hanging from your nose, and NOBODY TOLD YOU ABOUT IT.

    Christians today will often sit in the pews and sing, “We are His hands, we are His feet,” but will stop short of saying we are also His voice. “Well, if God wants to correct Clyde, He will do it thru His Holy Spirit.” How many times have I heard THAT!

    “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?”
    ‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭3:16‬ ‭KJV‬‬

    If we are a “community” of believers, brothers and sisters in the Lord (family), the “body of Christ,” we have an OBLIGATION to reprove, correct and instruct our fellow believers (2 Tim 3:16-17) – ONLY if it is done in love out of a genuine concern and done biblically with scripture, especially if God has shown YOU the problem and given YOU the unction to speak. To NOT do so then would be disobedience on your part.

    Scriptures abound that confirm this truth: (Jude 1:23, Matt. 18:15-17, Gal. 6:1, James 5:19-20, 2 Tim. 3:16-17, Prov. 27:17, Ezekiel 3:1-21). Unfortunately, we will often get the response, “You have no right to judge me!” And that, even from Christian circles. This exposes a common misunderstanding amongst Christians about judging, and is a subject too long to be covered here. But what if you get the response, “WOW, you’re the third person this week to tell me that. I think God may be trying to tell me something.” (Ya THINK?)

    It is relatively easy to do what God wants you to do, or go where God wants you to go, but to speak what God wants you to speak is hard. But it is fear that stops us from doing the right thing. I recognize it because I am a coward at heart. Make no mistake:

    “For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” ‭‭Esther‬ ‭4:14‬ ‭KJV‬‬

    His will will be done, but if we are disobedient to His Word and/ or His Spirit, we will answer for it.

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    • You know I don’t disagree with any of this, and that I don’t subscribe to the “you can’t judge me!” line.

      I also stand by what I said, that I have so many times kept my mouth shut and later see God indeed working on the very issue I’d seen, without needing any contribution from me. I’m not just fabricating that.

      I suppose it’s possible that such dynamics are likelier in a healthy and stable church (like mine, which spoils me) than in an unhealthy one.

      My ultimate point, and what I could have been more explicit on, though I did hit it in a couple of places, is that God often uses someone else. If I’m seeing something accurately, thirty other people probably are, too. What’s the likelihood, in that situation, that I will be picked as the messenger? Especially if there are people closer to the person, or with experience closer to the situation? That’s what I wrote further down.

      If I’m a coward, then what I chickened out on was the thing I really wanted to say: that sometimes it’s an idolatry we’re fighting when it comes to intervention. Some of us just want to be “the guy” on the matter. It’s a horrible motive. That’s where busybodies come from (I am not accusing you of this), and they use all those Scriptures to justify their lifestyle. I constantly have to fight that, and when God does pick me to go after something in someone, I’d better be doing so from the right heart, like you said.

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  3. Perhaps this comes with both Christian maturity and simply maturing more as an adult too. In my 20’s and some of my 30’s, I could sadly give advice too much. Looking back ( I am 48) I had too high a view of myself and my opinions. I trusted myself more than God, it would seem, to work in a person’s life.
    But sometime in my 30’s i began to change with this. Life is complex, and there aren’t always easy answers. I learned the hard way that I had made false assumptions about some people and situations. Like you, I am now more careful and cautious with advice giving.
    That doesn’t mean I never give advice or share a concern but much less often. I also ask myself if I have the “relational equity” to speak into this person’s life? Do I know them well enough and is our relationship solid enough that it is okay for me to do so? With the development of social media, I have observed and experienced people with no or little relational equity giving advice – they clearly are overstepping their place.
    Good post. Thanks for it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. As I was reading I couldn’t help but laugh to myself thinking of how many times I’ve been on situations like this. How many times I’ve stumbled trying to do the right thing. Or the times when by doing nothing other than living my life the way I do, faith filled and with my heart in my sleeve, that in a “little engine that could” kind of way made the difference in peoples lives. Keep living the faith. God bless.

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  5. I think sometimes we forget about the mentors of the faith. Like Paul to Timothy or Paul to Titus, gaining a mentor to guide you or someone for you to mentor is something that is to happen naturally. I once had a young woman come to me about her stepmother. She had accepted her salvation after her stepmother and instantly her stepmother became overbearing because she wanted so much to be her stepdaughter’s spiritual mentor. The stepmother was so focused on helping she forgot to ask what her stepdaughter needed help with, if anything at all. The stepdaughter became frustrated and asked me about it. As I had mentioned before, it is to be a natural thing and these are the folks who are more likely to lovingly pull someone aside and say ‘hey, let’s try it this way’ or ‘maybe we should put this habit aside and try a godly habit’. As you said above, it’s sometimes best to let God lead someone closer to the person needing guidance to speak and correct. However, we must also be ready when we are called to be someone’s mentor. Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed reading this and the discussions afterwards.

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