Words from the Heart for Friday July 22nd, 2016
My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them!
Proverbs 1:10 (NLT)
Turning Your Back On Sinners
A wise father teaches his son how to handle temptation. His strategy begins with something very simple: when you are enticed to do wrong, turn your back and walk away. What is your strategy to resist temptation?
A sad incident in Canadian history took place in 1939 when Canada turned her back on a boatload of 907 Jewish refugees aboard the German transatlantic liner St. Louis who were seeking sanctuary from Nazi Germany. But Canada refused to take them in and the ship sailed back to Europe, where 254 would later die in concentration camps. University of Toronto history professor George Wrong led a group of prominent clergy and academics in petitioning Prime Minister King to grant sanctuary to the refugees on humanitarian grounds. King wrote to his Immigration Minister Frederick Blair, advising that he “strongly consider this request.” But Blair, remembered by history for his race-based immigration policies that saw Canada only accept 5,000 Jewish immigrants during the 1930s and ’40s, fought the move. King, who had many Jewish friends, didn’t force the matter.
The friends that we choose in life can make or break us. Parents see that early on and it becomes particularly evident during the teen years. Young people who choose wisely and have friends that are a positive force in their lives help to mold them positively as they move into adulthood. That doesn’t really change over time. Even as adults, we are called to choose carefully those whom we become close to. King Solomon noticed that and so gave this advice in Proverbs 1:10: “My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them!” We need to look closely at what this verse is saying. Too often, we Christians hide out in our little Christian huddle because we love being with those who think, believe and act like us. It is proven that it only takes a couple of years after a person comes to faith in Christ until they have few non-Christian friends. We are called to build relationships with those who need the Lord so we can share our faith with them. But Solomon reminds us that if they are enticing us to sin, if they become the influence on our lives for evil rather than we influencing them for Christ, we need to pull away. Jesus taught us to pray “lead us not into temptation” and the Lord will give us wisdom to know when a relationship is drawing us away from Him. You be the influencer for Christ in every relationship.
These have been words from the heart.