My heart grieves for those that have fallen. My heart aches for those who have taken a step backward or have been led astray. My heart hurts for those who have willingly walked into their own destruction and demise. Regardless of the circumstance, failure, falling or sin, and regardless of their status, fame, fortune or position, they are still a brother or sister in Christ
There are always more details than what we read. There is always more to the story than what is shared. There is typically more behind what we see or hear. That’s just how it is.
There is usually more sin behind the sin, more ugly behind the ugly and more details behind the narrative. But why is it so necessary for us to know? Are we better people for knowing the details and timelines of the failures and sufferings of others?
Do we become better people for being more acquainted with messiness of someone’s mess? And, more importantly, what are we doing with that information?
Though he falls, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the LORD upholds him with His hand.Psalm 37:24
Why do people relish when others fail and fall? Why do people rally on social media to discuss and pick apart someone they don’t even know? Why does the Christian, shoot their own wounded? What a horrible reflection of the Jesus.
Don’t we realize that we are as blemished as the one who has fallen? Yet somehow, we allow ourselves to become their righteous critic. Speculations are made, conclusions are drawn, opinions are given and then, judgement.
Oh I get it, sometimes those that stumble and fall are heavy hitters. They’ve let us down. They’ve betrayed their flock and their followers, the very people in their care. They’ve misused their position whether intentionally or not. It hurts. It’s bad. It leaves us dizzy. And for some, a little cynical. It is damaging on all levels.
But it’s also us, we do this. We erect these people to some hierarchy that shouldn’t exist. We put them on pedal stools believing they are somehow holier than others. We follow them and their teachings and their posts more than we follow the Word of God. And when they fall, for whatever reason, we turn, we shift, we condemn. Shame on us.
As the sister of someone who is serving a prison sentence for an ugly crime, I can honestly say I have experienced some of what Matt Chandler and all involved may now be experiencing. All of a sudden friends who were once friends are hurtful, judgmental critics. The truth gets buried in a narrative that has been created to suit others or one they want to pass. People begin to message you and not necessarily out of concern or care but rather for the information and details you can provide. You are hurled into a spotlight without warning. And just like that, you, your family and life have become talking points at the dinner tables of others.
Aren’t we better than that? Can’t we be people who just grieve for the broken, the fallen, the wounded and then take a posture of prayer? Can’t we be shaken to our core that another soldier lost a battle? This kind of stuff should break our hearts.
I don’t know Mr. Chandler at all. I’m sure our doctrines may not fully align and I may have my own red flags about his beliefs. But I know he’s a brother in Christ. A broken man who may have screwed up. I’m no better. Who am I to indulge as a critic or even speculate of his falling?
The enemy is working hard. The enemy is fighting for souls and he is fighting to destroy the lives of those who are faithful. He wants to divide and split and cause irreparable damage. Just look at social media. He’s doing an outstanding job. And many are being used as useless tools to get his job done. They don’t even realize it!
This should frighten us. This should shake us. This should motivate us as Believers to fight with everything we have to remain on that narrow road. This should drive us to our knees for our brothers and sisters around us. We should be sad in our spirit and allow that sorrow to push us in prayer.
The discussion we should be having is how to better guard ourselves and be accountable to others. We should talk about how to gird ourselves with armor so we or someone we love doesn’t become another casualty of the enemy.
Because after all, there, but for the grace of God go I.#FirstShePrays