How many of us have gone through the experience of being angry with God because we felt let down by the lifestyle of a fellow Christian (especially someone who we thought God was using so much to impact others). Some of us have even gone to the extent of not attending church or not spending time with God because we were angry that so many (so called) hypocrites existed. We began to detest such people and that anger was often vented on God, impacting the relationship that we were starting to develop with Him or in other cases, affecting relationships that were just about to go to the next level.
I too went through a similar phase back in my college days. My Christian college was a place I came to truly know God and experience his touch profoundly. I was deeply impacted and completely sold out for Him. But slowly things started to change when I started getting influenced by the people around me. People who were serving God in some way or the other, and yet had a lifestyle that to me seemed a bit compromised. I began to lose focus on God and his love and instead started being disgruntled with the way, so called followers of Christ were behaving. My relationship with God was downhill from then on. I started detesting anything related to God and even started getting irritated with people who were genuinely trying to talk to me about God and in a way trying to talk some sense into me. It was truly tough, the love had turned into anger and bitterness. But you know what even when we give up on Him, He never gives up on us.
God started to stir something in my heart and teach me that my focus ought to be on Him and not on any other person. 1 Peter 2:21 and 22 says, “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. 22 “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth”. And there it was, Christ was supposed to be the example that I had to follow and him alone that I had to look up to. God started to tell me to look vertically and not horizontally. He also started to speak to me about not judging others too quickly. Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”.
Aren’t we all messed up in our way, so why be quick to judge others and take that bitterness against God? If we see him as the perfect example, our perspective would change and we would start seeing things a lot differently. Being “Christ Like” is a process, and the bitter truth is that a lot of times we falter. But if our focus is on God and not man, then we can avoid being in the rut where the Devil wants us to be.
In closing I want to share a quote I read a while back, “Not going to church because of hypocrites, is like not going to the gym because of unfit people”. Church is a place of fellowship, of encouragement and so much more. Do not let a petty disappointment keep you away from God and other people who like you are on their journey of being “Christ Like” (remember it is a process!).
Amen, brother! Keep writing, God is using you.
I believe every believer has been there, and as you reflected ‘the deceiver’ wants us to think like that. Great work!