Not long ago, I talked with a friend about different issues including religion and while me and this gentleman are friends, we do not agree with much when it comes to religion. The biggest fundamental difference that I have found between me and others that I have come in contact with is emotion. While I am very emotionally invested in my faith, I do not allow my emotions to dictate and lead my beliefs.
If I feel a certain way about an issue, I do my best to ensure that it lines up with what scripture has to say. We are human beings and sometimes, maybe many times, what we feel may not be accurate with what God says and this is normal. After all, we live within our sin nature and it is not our nature to do good: “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh” (Romans 8:3).
Trust me, I still have problems with this myself as we get emotionally attached to different things or different people. There have been different times in my life when I used my emotions to stay with different people when using common logic and/or scripture would have allowed me to see that these people were not deserving of my attention and time. We do this for different reasons but regardless of this reason(s), it comes back to our sin nature which is real regardless how good of a person you think of yourself as: “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin” (Romans 6:6).
A personal attachment to someone or something does not always mean that we are living within sin but we do have to be careful about the people and things that we allow for ourselves to be exposed to. One of the most difficult things that many of us face is letting people that we have gotten used to, go, and while this is never easy, there comes a time when we must separate ourselves from the people causing us the most harm. One of the most important lessons that I have learned in my Christian walk is that we must do away with anything that takes us away from God even those who we affiliate with most: “For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.”
Unfortunately, it took me over thirty years to realize this and before I put it into motion. For a long time, this was not a concept that I bought into and while I knew people could be toxic, I was not careful with whom I exposed myself to which caused me great heartache and many, many troubles. Rather than being so much further in my journey below, I am recovering from different hurts and still overcoming different problems that came about from different situations. While we all go through troubling times, I have observed many people who deny their sinful ways and claim self-righteousness but scripture is clear that “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (1 John 1:8).
Yes, we will all sin and none of us will ever be beyond this but we must do our best to separate ourselves from people and things that keep us down. Many times, unfortunately, the things that keep us hindered and from our potential tend to be what we believe in. There has been a great number of data collected that shows people and their belief in Christ and living for Christ has decreased significantly over the last half-century which is, at least in part, responsible for the lack of morality and fundamental principles that we, as a people, used to rely on. This confusion has led us to accept many alternative lifestyles and our attachments and emotions have continued to led us down a path that has completely reshaped anything that we used to resemble as a nation and as a body of Christ.
For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh”–Romans 8:3