Many a time, Christianity can be a joyful walk. A journey with Christ, undergoing continual sanctification with brothers and sisters of the same body. In the same light, there is also joy when more people are adopted into the eternal love of Christ, joining the family and becoming a member of the body. However, this is not always the case. As much as we have people joining with Christ, we also have people falling away. What should we do in these instances? Perhaps you have faced a similar situation with a friend or family member. Or perhaps you are the one slowly slipping and falling away – here are some tips on how we should react to such things.
How should we react?
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
1 Peter 4:8
It is not uncommon for ‘Christians’ to fall away from the faith. It was prophesied in gospels that many will be swayed and fall away in the last days. It is therefore up to the remaining in the faith to stay firm until the very end. However, this shouldn’t mean that we should neglect those who have lost their faith – in fact, we should more so show love to those who have left. We should not lack sympathy in these matters, but instead try and find out the reason for such doubt and encourage them back on the right path. This is why it is important to constantly encourage our brothers and sisters, so that we can all remain firm in the body of Christ and in our faith, preventing us wandering away from the truth.
Additionally, our actions to those leaving the faith should not be discriminatory or prideful. We must try not to act in a manner that could be-little those who have made this decision. Instead, we should try our utmost to act with love. We need to understand that God is sovereign over every situation, He is not a God of mistakes nor is a man that He would lie. He is the same God who hardened the heart of the Pharoah and softened the heart of Lydia. Therefore, as much as we should encourage those who have made this decision or are losing their faith, we should also aim to pray for them, that in all God will bring them back towards the truth their heart longs for. This is love.
However, we should be careful. It is understandable that people falling away from the faith can cause demotivation and a questioning of our own faith, but we should realise that our faith is not placed in man, but in God alone. Instead, we should set our eyes on the truth above and pray for guidance and strength to run the race, despite our weakness in this sinful world.
Is Christ your Foundation?
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”
Christ is described many times in the Bible as our Cornerstone, our firm foundation – an unmovable force that keeps us firm in Him. Therefore, it shouldn’t be surprising if our faith wavers when we do not set our sights on Him. The story of Peter walking on water portrays this. As he set his sights on Jesus, He was able to walk, however, when he started to doubt, that’s when He started to fall.
Staying firm in Christ may be difficult, however God always leaves us with a solution to every problem. In the Bible, it says faith comes by hearing and by hearing the Word of God. Delving into the Word and listening to sermons can be a way for you to remember who God is, reigniting your faith. As cheesy as it may sound, going out for walks or even just talking to friends about God can also act as a way to reignite your faith. Lastly, reminiscing on God’s power on your life and on what He has done for you can be a very impactful way of reigniting your trust and faith in Him. I pray that God gives you the strength to maintain an unshakable faith in Him. Keep running the race boldly, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2).