Jun 11th 2021 · Day 162
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Have you ever been in the position where you felt someone condemned you for the way you looked, or acted?
A little while after I first became a Christian, I was thrilled to be part of the local Easter ‘walk of witness’ in the town where I live, but felt crushed when someone asked me if I thought a Christian woman should be wearing make-up.
Needless to say, I was wearing make-up!
Not long afterwards, I was filled with the Holy Spirit. At the time I was wearing high heels and make-up and it made me realise that God loves me for who I was, not for the way I looked. OK, after that I probably cut down on the make-up. Maybe it had become rather a mask, and when I realised God loved me anyway, I didn’t need it any more (or quite so much of it!).
In Romans 14, we can see how important it is not to cause people to ‘stumble’ (v. 13). We may see behaviour we don’t ‘approve’ of, but we should proceed with caution when discipling others. We need to be particularly careful, I think, with new or young Christians.
Sometimes we have to walk alongside people and gently point them to Jesus, trusting the Holy Spirit to convict and change attitudes and actions. But let’s be kind; let’s remember that we are serving the same Master, and therefore should not be passing judgements on each other (v. 4). Judgement can make a person feel shamed, and shrivel up inside. But Jesus has come to set us free (John 8:36).
So let’s make sure we encourage each other, as friends and family, as we follow Jesus together.
Pause and reflect: Is there someone you need to encourage and build up today?
Sheila Jacobs is a Christian writer and editor, and an award-winning author. She is also a retreat leader and day chaplain at a retreat house. She loves listening to people’s stories, and encouraging writers to hone their
potential. She is passionate about pursuing God and helping others meet with Jesus.
© Victory Church UK 2021