Thursday March 9, 2006
When Others Fail Us
Being human is not a sin; it is just reality. We each have frailties and periods of suffering. Often, when difficulties arise, we turn to friends and family for comfort. But these people are human, too, and subject to their own weaknesses and failures.
We fail other people for many reasons. Some have to do with purposeful plans, while others involve subconscious reactions. For instance, a man may avoid visiting his dying brother because he feels inadequate to help. Or a woman might stop calling a widowed friend because she fears facing a similar situation. Too often, friends abandon a person who has made a tragic mistake, like committing adultery, because they refuse to be associated with such an obvious sinner. In God’s eyes, repentance clears away the sin stain, but people at times refuse to overlook someone else’s wrongdoing.
Many individuals have a judgmental spirit. Assuming others deserved to lose a job or have the bank foreclose, they refuse to provide emotional support. Trials are often beyond our control — a company’s financial troubles can necessitate layoffs, or a poor harvest can mean losing the farm.
But perhaps the most common reason we fail each other is self-centeredness. We feel too busy with our own problems.
Knowing why others fail us is small consolation, but God does provide a source of perfect comfort no human can provide. The Holy Spirit is the believer’s strength, encouragement, and constant companion. Everyone else may abandon, criticize, or ignore us, but God will never forsake His children.
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