How Far is too Far?

Hi Everybody,

It’s nearly the weekend!!! Praise God!! :D

Today is rather a short contemplation…hmmmm…maybe more of a question. I was thinking about how people do certain things that trail along the lines of compromise.

How Far is too Far?

I think that some people first ask themselves…. “How far can I go?” , before asking the first question I posed which is “How Far is too Far?”. I think to a large extent, we don’t seem to know how subtle compromise is in changing our minds about common moral standards  which are GODLY STANDARDS  that should be upheld in our conduct through our words, thoughts, actions and deeds.  When we fail to uphold Godly standards by compromising with the truth, we open doors to start believing in a lie(s).

Think about it…it’s like starting off by telling a “small ‘white’ lie” to yourself or another until you have to back it up with many “‘black’ lies”  (seriously, do lies even have a colour?)  to remain convincing, hoping that there is a shade of gray in this whole mess and then hopefully after having done that…you sell off this blatant lie as truth that it becomes soo customized that you yourself begin to believe in the very lie that you have contrived and put together on your own. This is called SELF-DECEPTION. I find this type of thing to be a scary activity that I have seen others participate in it on a regular basis.

Choosing to remain in denial of the truth is choosing to live a lie and believe it too.

This is how people develop a SEARED CONSCIENCE.

The attitudes of those I have witnessed to have such a seared conscience are rather cold and calculating…that the mere presence of them wreaks of evil.

Like I said in an earlier post…I’ve seen a lot of evil in my day… and what I can tell you is that having seen a person acting on a seared conscience….you can tell when what governs their hearts, their minds and their spirit is utter darkness throughout their conduct.

As Christians, we must be vigilant to keep our conscience clear.

Daily repentance shields us from believing that “gray areas” exist in regarding what is RIGHT and WRONG when the Bible is clear in its guidelines.

King David knew how to keep his conscience clear even though there were many instances where he was tempted to stray from the path of righteousness before God. King David acknowledged his weaknesses and refused to be in denial of his sinful actions especially after being reprimanded by Prophet Nathan over his sin of Adultery with Uriah’s wife Bethsheba. God loved David enough to warn him of his crime through a Prophet to give him a chance to change his ways. David took that chance and repented for his actions even though he reaped some of the things that he had sown because he wanted to keep remaining in right standing before God.

How many of us want to keep remaining in Right Standing with the Lord?

When we sin…we don’t offend the Bible…we offend GOD. However, not many people see it this way, even those that lack the reverential Fear of God will not even blink twice when they run quickly to do evil. This is totally my opinion, you can agree or disagree with it because you are entitled to your own opinion. This is just what I believe to be true. 

My dear friends, we must not be deceived of the subtleties of compromise. We must remain vigiliant and stand up for the truth for what it is, even if the truth is unpopular to someone else or even if the truth in its own way offends ourselves. We have to stand for what is right at the end of the day. We cannot afford to sear our conscience….If we do….we will end up like King Saul who didn’t think twice to run quickly to evil. He even went as far as seeking advice from the adversary through the use of a medium rather than seeking God for answers towards what is true which indicates the repercussions for those that pursue a lifestyle that is perpetuated by believing in a lie; one quickly runs to evil for answers, seeking ‘a truth’ from an evil source which is falsehood; a lie; and an idea that is contrary to the truth. When we sear our conscience…we  not only start believing in a lie…but we ultimately start seeking how to live and perpetuate that lie to satisfy the desires of the flesh. King Saul’s life ended tragically as his soul was darkened by hatred and blood lust fueled by his arrogance and Pride that even God rejected him from being king of Israel and had replaced him with a humble-spirited young shepherd, little David, who maintained a lifestyle always in pursuit of Holiness while struggling with his weaknesses. David pleased God more than Saul ever did.

God abides with us in the Truth. Lies separate us from the Truth and inevitably we get separated from God if we choose to believe in a lie and nurture a contrary spirit that resists the truth and the workings of the HOLY SPIRIT, so heed this warning seriously.  

Humility is key… so for those that are thinking “How far can I go?” and “How far is too far?”, I suggest that you stop thinking in this way…and start thinking “What is the right thing for me to do?”. When you contemplate on what is right…you pursue the truth and that is how we remain in right standing. Compromise subtly leads us astray, but when you remember this question:  What is the right thing for me to do?” you will be brought back on the right path that leaves no room for gray areas. Pursue the truth with much fear and trembling everybody and leave no room for self-deception to creep in, AMEN!

God bless you everybody!

Related Articles:

Revisiting: Your Truth, My Truth, The Truth  by Michael

The Hidden Temptation in the ‘Corner of the Robe’ by Evangelist Shyju Mathew

Scriptures to Meditate

1 John 2:24
[ Let Truth Abide in You ] Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father.

1 John 3:24
[ The Spirit of Truth and the Spirit of Error ] Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.

The Great Apostasy

4 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.

John 8:31
[ The Truth Shall Make You Free ] Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. Registered & Protected

So you lied to me – Trust is Earned My Friend

Broken trust and broken promises have a way of chipping at the core or a persons being that trust is diminished. I was thinking about the various instances where the people I trusted broke my faith in them. Anger filled me like a raging tornado. It’s one thing to know the principle of forgiveness but to operate when the time calls for it is the time when we are truly tested. 

So you lied to me…doesn’t mean that I’ll trust you so easily again. When people break that level of confidence we have in another, it is difficult to regain it at the same level as it were. Once it is broken it is broken. Count the cost before you lie to someone or do something that compromises the confidence they have in you.

I always keep saying to people I encounter “count the cost” but it seems that it runs through one ear and out the other. COUNT THE COST of your actions. You will notice that in many of my posts I emphasize on character building traits. This isn’t going to be a lecture on how to be a good person. I’m talking about learning to change for the better good for yourself and others.

Those that have lost my trust try harder to convince me to regain it but don’t understand that to earn back a person’s confidence and trust that you have broken, you have to PROVE beyond a reasonable doubt that you are actively seeking to change your ways. This is where we need to exercise prudence and discernment. TRUST IS EARNED. It’s unfortunate, but people have to work even harder if they want to regain the confidence they had established in the relationship that they broke.

I always say to my friends that you should “take your time to trust people” but even when you do, there are people that you may encounter in life that know how to deceive you masterfully. When the truth is revealed, the shock is so immense that it can cause one to implode from the inside. I encountered something like that recently and have been in shock for a while so I know what I’m talking about. Even though I have forgiven the person not out of my own strength but by seeking God in the matter, my confidence in the person has changed in that I can no longer trust them despite the forgiveness. It is true that “Love is Blind”.

Just because you forgive doesn’t mean you can trust so easily again. That I think is foolishness. Trust is earned…if the offender wants to regain trust they’ll have to work hard to convince me and that is what happens to us when we are betrayed. Betrayal is a terrible thing to experience but it has been a learning experience for me. I also take things into perspective and consider that it is good that I learned the TRUE CHARACTER of the person now so that I no longer continue to be deceived by them. Things could have escalated and turned out much worse if I was not revealed sooner rather than later.

A person once said to me “Be careful how you burn your bridges”. I agree with this statement. If you value a relationship, then treat it like how you would value Silver or Gold. If you seek a relationship of value, then you must understand that it is built through trust and if you break it, you have compromised the value of the relationship.

People can be fickle, but this fickle-mindedness doesn’t understand the value of trust because it seeks self-gratification and is also another characteristic of PRIDE. Why value trust when it can be so easily broken? Trust is needed in order to have a relationship to begin with. If you can’t be trusted with little, you can’t be trusted with much. We as humans are relational beings and TRUST is required in order to maintain relationships.

Even though I have experienced some disappointing characters in my walk, I must say that there are great people out there that have been my support. It hurts when you lose confidence in a relationship where trust is broken because you begin to contemplate whether or not the whole relationship was a farce?

Eventually, I must come to terms with all of this and decide to move on. This doesn’t mean I deny the pain, but I choose not to remain wounded by all of this forever. There is no point in doing that. I have had several bad experiences with certain people I trusted but I think that even when we are hurt, it shouldn’t change you so dramatically that you become too weary and distant towards people in general. When you start to do that, you’ll develop a sense of defensiveness that comes from being broken-hearted. It isn’t healthy to stay that way for too long so forgiveness is needed to release that bitterness from that betrayal.

Can I move on after the betrayal?

Yes, you can. You don’t have to stay there. If you become distrustful over every person that you encounter after the bad experience, you will lose chances of connecting with people that are there to help build you.

Don’t let one bad experience rob you from gaining a better relationship with another. 

My Last Note: In the end, when trust is broken, you should keep in mind that it is not so much that you learn about the other person, but you must learn about yourself.

Are you too trusting? Were there signs in the initial stages that should have been warning signs not to pursue this relationship? How deceitful was the individual? Has it changed you for the better or for the worse? Did you forgive and let go? Have you sharpened your discernment?

Don’t lose faith in people just because of a few bad apples. Instead, learn from these experiences and Thank God for revealing the truth from the lies despite the pain accompanied by the betrayal. The truth helps you to walk a wiser person. Learn from it and move on with appreciation. Registered & Protected

The Power of an Apology

The power of an apology is something that I was contemplating about after something happened to me last week. I have someone that I report to that cussed me down out of a fit of anger over something else that they were dealing with. Even though I knew that they really weren’t angry at me per say, it didn’t mean that their behaviour was excusable; it just meant that it was understandable. Their actions didn’t minimize the hurt I felt and yes, I admit that I was incredibly offended over the incident because even though they are my superior, they have absolutely NO right to speak to me or anyone in that way. It was a very trying week for me as well so that wasn’t helping me at all.

I noticed later on that he did not apologize to me for what he did but even though he didn’t, I had already resolved it within myself to choose to forgive him because I had knowledge that as of late he’s been experiencing strife at home and the way he deals with his problems is taking it out on somebody else that has nothing to do with his problems. He vents out his anger on any unsuspecting victim without recourse which I find to be a serious escalating issue that he has not dealt with.

After this incident which I will state for the record has not been the first time he has done this, I find that he has a tendency to speak nicely to me after the fact in an attempt to be back in my good graces but he still has not learned that it’s all well and good that you are now behaving but you still have not apologized. He did not take ownership for his bad behaviour and apologize.

Please understand that I’m not sitting here expecting an apology because I already know he is stubborn; however, when I watch him, I notice that when he refuses to say those words he gets easily wracked up with guilt and hangs his head low even though he is screaming “I’M SORRY!!!!!” inside his head from what I observe from his body language . I sat there thinking to myself that he is the type of person that finds it hard to utter those two important and yet simple words that can release him from feeling guilt-ridden so I question, why does he struggle with that?

In fact, why do we all at some point struggle to say “I’m Sorry”?

You know, just to be fair, when I think about it, there were times I too found it difficult to admit that I was at fault for some of the things I did to others and was sorry for. Why is saying sorry a majorly hard thing to do at times? I know that it shouldn’t be but what I think makes it difficult to admit fault is that we are often too proud to admit to our failures that we find the idea of apologizing as something that points out our weaknesses and we don’t want to be perceived as weak nor do we wish to be perceived as wrong in the eyes of others. 

I am reminded of this quote that is very humbling and encouraging because it points out that “To Err is human; to forgive, divine” – Alexander Pope

We all make mistakes but do we learn from them? We have to learn to let go of our PRIDE when we apologize for our actions. Sometimes, we apologize for the actions of others even if we are not at fault because it allows others to treat the offender with grace even when it’s undeserving. This goes back to the fact that saying “sorry” is a characteristic of humility. I know I keep talking about humility all the time but I find that it is so important to cultivate this character as a person.  We learn to not repeat our mistakes if we remain humble and it’s also a form of wisdom too.

We have many excuses as to why we shouldn’t apologize for something that we did because we refuse to take responsibility for our actions and pass the buck onto someone else who is innocent because we hate looking bad. I think that we look worse when we don’t fess up to our mess and admit that we did wrong someone.  I think that men struggle a little more than women in this area of apologizing because they are socialized to be strong. It is that ego and philosophy that makes them have a difficult time admitting that they can be wrong at times and sometimes their actions hurt others. I’m not trying to be sexist here because women equally have a problem with admitting that they do wrong as well. All I’m saying is that men are socialized to be strong in the world and apologizing for their actions is a sign of weakness in their perspective. So like my superior did to me, he evaded the issue and attempted to stuff his wrong doings under the carpet and spoke gently to me after all the cussing he had done earlier. He refused to confront the issues he has by deciding not to apologize.  He should not take my grace to forgive him for granted and neither should we take it for granted in our own lives either.

Grace is given when we do things that are undeserving of it but we should not take it for granted. If we learn nothing from the grace that is given to us, we allow ourselves to be judged for our actions and place ourselves in a deeper pit that could have been easily avoided had we chosen to say “I’m Sorry, I did you wrong”. Grace is a chance to change; use every opportunity that is given to do so. 

There is a heavy price to pay if we refuse to confront our issues and continue to take advantage of the grace others have in our lives when we wrong them.

I think that if my superior apologized to me, it would help him to be released from feeling guilt. However, I have noticed a pattern in his behaviour in that he repeats the same mistake over and over because he has not learned the lesson.  He fails to see that by apologizing for his actions he can release himself from feeling guilt-ridden about his actions. I keep thinking that I feel sorry for him because he should be happy that I am able to forgive his bad behaviour but what happens if he comes across someone else that isn’t as forgiving? His mouth can land him in a heap of trouble but that is because he hasn’t practiced saying “I’m sorry for my behaviour”.

We should not make justifications for not apologizing because you will trap yourself in an ongoing cycle of guilt.

The power of apologizing isn’t intended to weaken you but strengthen you in that you release yourself from the guilt of your bad actions. Also, it gives you inner peace that you can now proceed to move on from your mistake and learn from it.

If you hold onto your pride and choose not to do the right thing by apologizing, you set yourself up to appear arrogant and haughty which is characteristic of PRIDE. 

If you find it difficult to say your sorry, then try writing out an apology as a starting point. You’ve got to start somewhere right? I must also point out that apologizing makes one feel vulnerable before another which can also be a reason as to why one would choose not to pursue this course of action because you have no idea if the other party will forgive you of your actions or has that level of grace to overlook your actions. That is something that I struggled with when I was in my teenage years because I was sometimes obstinate and rude and felt that these two words would make me look like a fool, but now I know that the bigger fool is one who remains arrogant and sees no reason to admit their faults before others including themselves. Do not be deceived! Do not allow yourself to be in denial.

Don’t land into an area where you become in denial about your actions, you will experience unnecessary pain in doing so. Then again…it’s your choice.

 Also take note that you should never start an apology with an excuse. Be sincere and acknowledge that when you say sorry you should be reasonable in that depending on the level of harm or hurt you caused another, the other party may not want to forgive you. Your apology is about YOU making right what you did wrong. It is still necessary to apologize because as much as forgiveness is for us; apologizing is about us too. We apologize to release us from guilt and come to a place where we can repent and learn from our bad decisions, failures, mistakes, wrongdoings, and sins. The objective of Apologizing is to learn what NOT to do next time and also when we practice apologizing we escape patterns of bad behaviour as well. 

Now having that said, the Power of the Apology is best experienced when it is SINCERE. I cannot stress this enough. If you are not sincere when you are apologizing to someone or a group, you are not just fooling them, but you are fooling yourself. Don’t lie to others with a half-baked apology. It’s a dis-service to the offended and it shows that you are too proud to realize that you compromise your moral standards to satisfy your ego.  There is a heavy price to pay in practicing this way of thinking. DO NOT be fooled with this idea because let me tell you right now that you will reap what you sow so please by all means, be sincere!
I hope that we all come to a place where we set out egos aside and learn to do the right thing. This is a character building thing. Pursue to do what is right and release yourself from the wrongs you have done by admitting to yourself, to others and to God (if you are a believer) that you are human, you make mistakes and you want to have the strength to put aside your ego to release others and yourself from the harm done. Repent and apologize.
My Last Note:
Ask yourself why you find it hard to apologize ? Write your thoughts concerning this on paper so that you read your answers and consider whether or not these things hinder you from practicing saying “I’m sorry”.
Have you ever written an apology? Write it down and get into the habit.
How did you feel after apologizing? Write it down so that you remember and do not forget.
Why do we make excuses before apologizing? Don’t justify your bad behaviour, own up and take responsibility for your actions.
Are you afraid of apologizing? Why? Write these answers down.
Consider this, the price of not apologizing is living a life full or guilt and regrets. Count the cost and ask yourself is it worth it not to say “I’m sorry” from the very depths of your heart? Look deep within yourself and you will find the answers. Find the courage to say…. Registered & Protected