As a follower of Christ, you are called to speak Truth, which is the Word of God; and to speak the Gospel to non-believers. As Christians, amongst a Body of Christ, we are called to speak Truth to one another, to give encouragement, present accountability, but with love and kindness. These are all things that Christ did, and Christ spoke of, and therefore they are Truth.
Let me tell you a story—I had a good friend that I had become very close to. However, I had failed in my calling—I had not spoken the Gospel to her and I had not offered prayer, encouragement and accountability. However, despite my failings, God pursues His people and provided her with a different opportunity to hear the Good News. As time went on, I realized that I had been having “issues” with this friend of mine, but I felt awkward presenting Biblical accountability when I had not done that from the beginning. But God, being faithful and true, presented an opportunity for me to speak Truth to her—and I encouraged her to pursue God’s Word on what being a follower of Christ is because if we, as Christians, are not pursuing His Word, then we are not pursuing Him. And this is when the walls went up—our instinctively defensive nature about our Faith.
We often dislike other Christians telling us how to pursue God because that is something that is “ours” and “no one else understands”.
However, that is not Scripturally correct. That is not what God’s word tells us about our faith.
1 Peter 4:10-11 gives us evidence of this.
This situation raised a greater question in me though—a question I suspect many of us, as followers and Christ and pursuers of the Word, have often faced. When do we fight harder for our brothers and sisters and when do we let go? At what point do we tip the scales of building our fellows up over pulling ourselves down?
As I began to pray on these very questions, the Holy Spirit spoke to me—“The Sower and the Seed”. After reading again through the Parable that Jesus told about the Sower and the Seed, I realized that it was a perfect representation of this very story (look to Matthew Chapter 13 if you do not know the Parable).
The farmer is Jesus. The seeds are God’s Word, specifically the Gospel. The plant growth is a representation of the people’s response to the Gospel.
Christians tell people the Truth, we tell what Scripture says—but we are not the farmer. We are not the one who nurtures the seeds. Trying to be the farmer is taking away from God’s power—it’s thinking that we can bring people to the Light, we can save them, we can make them better people.
We are not the soil. We do not determine how the plants grow. We do not make them grow, make them flourish. Again, that is taking God’s place—the place of His Truth, His Word.
Thus the question is—
Do we fight harder or do we let go?
Jesus fought. Jesus never let go. Jesus rebuked. Jesus loved. Jesus encouraged.
But Jesus never let go.
And He will never let go of His people, His crop. But we are not the farmer. We fight the way Jesus fought—with love and encouragement, but with Truth. But we do not save. If the question you are asking is do I fight harder or do I let go, then you should be asking:
Did I speak Truth? Did I encourage and love with the Truth?
If the answer is “Yes”, then look at Matthew 13:14-15 where Jesus explains the parable to His disciples:
“ ‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;
you will be seeing but never perceiving.’
For this people’s heart have become calloused;
they hardly hear with their ears,
and they have closed their eyes,
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
hear with their ears,
understand with their hearts
And turn, and I would heal them.”
You are not the farmer. You are not the soil. You are called to speak the Truth, but you are not the Truth. Continue to diligently pray for these people that have shallow or thorny soil, continue to speak Truth into their lives, continue to love and encourage, never shying away from the Truth. But remember the question is not to fight harder or let go, that is taking the Truth out of the equation and relying on ourselves rather than the power of Our God.