Hate Your Family More Than Christ?

This weekend has been one of the most troubling weekends I have had in a while.  The things that are happening are so new to me and I would say its a good thing in the sense that God is really working in my life.  If you asked me 3 years ago if I was a Christian I would probably have told you yes. If you asked me if I had been saved I would have told you no.  I know by now you are probably wondering how the heck I was calling myself a Christian if I have never been saved.  And all I can tell you is that some how I didn’t get taught that in order for me to be a Christian it would require me to deny myself, pick up my cross and follow Jesus (Matt 16:24).  It would also require me to hate my family more than Christ (Luke 14:26), it would require long suffering, it would require repentance– a renewed mind, it would require me to basically drop everything and leave people and places behind.  It could even mean that I’d face persecution (Rom 8:35). it could mean putting my life on the line.  And now I know this may sound like A LOT to ask of someone but it takes all of that and more to really call yourself a follower of Christ.

When I was 18 I met my husband, Melvin D. Burns during my freshmen year of college.  He was far different from any other guy I had ever met for the simple fact that he was an honest God fearing man.  I had not idea that someone like him would ever consider talking to a girl like me.  When I first started college I was eager and ready to do everything almost every college student expects to do which is party party party and drink like it no body’s business.  As a college student you are finally able to break out be grown up because your parents aren’t around to tell you what to do.  I didn’t have the best company either but I settled for people who I thought were most like me and who were tolerable for the most part especially when it came to  going out.  In more than one instance I found myself in what I would consider near death situations;  if you would consider getting in a car with a drunk driver twice near death situations.  I once ended up almost being stranded at an off campus party where pretty much everyone was drunk except little old me and a few other random people who were not at all willing to bring me back to campus to make my 2:00 a.m. curfew.  Through all of those situations God was definitely trying to tell me He didn’t want me there and He definitely was the only one who was looking out for me and my best interest.  I knew I was being called I just didn’t wanna listen.

There was one other person who was always looking out for me; Melvin.  I remember when I tried to approach him as I did every other guy I was interested in, well lets just say that didn’t work.  The more he and I got to know each other, the more I really wanted him to stay in my life.  It was as if God had used him to as a way to take me away from the people, things and places I was used to that caused me to sin.  Mel and I stayed friends for about 2 months and then we became a couple which made me very happy. Even though we were together and I knew that there was a lot that I was not going to do anymore I was sill struggling to get rid of bad habits and things that were not good for my faith in Christ.  I can honestly say that I have grown a lot more in my faith since then but I am still growing  which bring me to my next point.

Now in the beginning of his post I began to say that this weekend has been quite troubling.  Keeping in mind everything I just said try to understand where I’m going with this.  During your walk as a Christian you are often going to become distant from people and some of those people may be your family members.  I know I am suppose to love Christ more than my family and I am having a hard time trying not to step on people’s toes but I know we cannot keep living for the approval of people.  I want so badly for my family’s Christian faith become more real because right now I don’t see them growing in faith and they look more and more like the world than they do people of God.  I feel sometimes we have to get out of the way and let God work but I find that Istart to feel the need to stick around.  When I decide not to show up to certain family gatherings I start feeling like I am making a huge deal out of nothing.  I mean God calls us out of places and way from people all the time and that includes family but I almost tend to feel like I don’t have to dismiss them entirely.  I mean Jesus didn’t say ignore your family all together but at the same time I know we are not suppose to hate what is evil and cling to what is good (Rom 12:9).  I have family members who do evil things constantly even after I have spoken to them about it and it bugs me because I want them to see that their sin is going to be the death of them(Rom 6:23) .  We are to be like Christ and for the majority of my family to consider themselves Christians its rare that you see them even trying to be Christ like and I  know I can’t be around that.

All in all my biggest prayer is that my family recognizes that I have changed and that I am now living for Christ. And also that they too see my Christian lifestyle lived out to the fullest and take from that and apply it to their own lives. I pray that God just uses me in that way.  My husband is always telling me not to be a part of any of the things my family members do and not because he is trying to control me because its my choice whether I decide to take part or not but I know it disappoints him when I make the choice to join with them anyways.  This weekend I was invited to my cousin’s 21st birthday dinner and today I was invited to breakfast at my cousin’s house.  Two problems are that I know my mom needs to change her ways and I shouldn’t sit and be around her all the time okaying her behavior and I know my cousin and her friends and I have nothing in common anymore. I just didn’t know how to tell either of them that I don’t want to be around them.  So I try to find excuses but that doesn’t make me feel good. I want them to know the truth which is simply that I just can’t be around the way I used to because we live so differently. I live for Christ and they seem to just be living just like the rest of the world. I love them dearly and I won’t ignore them but at the same time I won’ go against God.

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