Keller: Open rebuke has more meaning than secret love
I think the greatest test of one’s faith is when it’s challenged.
The Bible says that open rebuke is better than secret love. I certainly don’t mind anyone using the tongue to encourage me or teach me things beneficial to my spiritual growth.
I must admit that when challenged about my walk with God, the majority of the time I get defensive and strike back in an ungodly way. However, this week, I handled open rebuke about my Christian walk in a way that I know pleased God.
In fact, I was so excited when I got home. I told Jeanne that she would have been proud of her husband.
I shared with her about the meeting I had with a person I’ve known all my life. He really attacked me and said that my talk was much better than my walk. In fact, the word “hypocrite” was directed to me.
I sat quietly for 15 minutes and just listened as he shared, not only about my walk, but also about politics, family, education and race relations.
In my adult life, I cannot recall any time that I just sat quietly, listened and admitted that, at times, I am hypocritical.
I agreed that my talk, like most people, is much better than my walk. I told him that I’m just a work in progress and God wasn’t finished with me yet.
The conversation lasted about 40 minutes.
When we parted, he said that he loves me and that we need to do that more often.
As I drove away, I was reminded that it’s easy to love the lovable, but the test is loving the unlovable. One of the things we had in common was that, at times, we can both be unlovable.
I think that our meeting was productive for both of us.
Yes, open rebuke is better than secret love, but it doesn’t feel good. It’s proof that the truth will set you free if you’re open to allowing God to continue the work He started.
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