My dear readers, this is not my normal column but actually a letter of apology that I feel like needs to be written to those who read my column from last week.
I have really tried to be careful for all the years that I have been writing not to be purposely offensive or even controversial. I have very strong opinions and beliefs however and sometimes I do not wait on the wisdom that comes from God and is readily available to me when I access it properly. Sometimes I do not use the best or most appropriate words to express myself in a way that truly represents the heart and nature of the God I have come to know and love.
Last week, in the process of trying to make a point about how different the mindsets of many of the younger generation are, I used my own family members who I love dearly in a very un-Christ like way. I was totally wrong for saying what I did and I ended up offending not only them but others who know my family very well. I am deeply sorry for allowing my emotions and opinions and skewed way of looking at something to affect others in a negative, offensive way. I want to state as plainly as I can — I was wrong. Please forgive me if you are one who read that column and were in any way offended or put off. I pray often for all of my family to come to know the loving God that I try to represent. By stating things the way I did, I became accusatory and judgmental, which is never God’s heart. Do I want them to encounter the God that I have come to know and love? Absolutely. Did I represent His true character to them or any of my readers who may not feel the same way as I do? Absolutely not.
I can say that from my observations and what I have been trying to articulate for many weeks, the very ones who call upon the name of the Lord have not represented Him well overall. That is a broad generalization that certainly does not include everyone by any means. But I am including myself in that number. I obviously know very little of His true nature which is unconditional love, but I have been asking Him for some time to change me and make me more like Him, so one of the ways He does that is to highlight where we are not like Him. I have given the Holy Spirit permission to correct me where I am not like Him. Of course, I would rather deal with it in my own private prayer time and many times do, but if I was not able to hear His correction then, He had to make it more obvious. He did.
Correction is wonderful if it is done in the right spirit. A loving parent corrects their child when they do something that is inappropriate, especially when it affects others or endangers their own life (playing in the street, for example). A child that is allowed to do whatever they want, whenever they want could grow up being an individual that is unteachable, unruly or worse. I have addressed this in other articles but just want to state that I love it when the Lord corrects me — I also hate it, because it is usually embarrassing and exposes how much room I still have to grow!
I will continue to write columns that I hope will be encouraging and uplifting but at times may be challenging for each of us to consider something from a different perspective. Each one of us is accountable to the Lord for our own lives and conduct. I will try very hard not to point fingers at anyone else that may have a different perspective, while sharing what I believe and why. I am an openly Christian person with a biblical world view and I can never apologize for that, but I am realistic enough to know I do not see nor do I have the whole picture. You do not have to agree with me, but I certainly do not want to offend you or to misrepresent the God I am still coming to know and understand.