This morning, I happened on some thoughts I jotted down several years ago. I am sharing them in case they might be relevant and helpful to others.
This concept has to do with opposites. A couple Biblical examples are brought to mind:
Matthew 6:24 – No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other.
Matthew 25:32 – All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
Also, God sometimes escalates the conditions of what is good to become better. The word I “heard” from Him is ameliorate. He is also escalating the conditions of what is bad to become worse. He gave the word exacerbate.
|Ameliorate: to make or become better, more bearable, or more satisfactory; improve; meliorate.
Exacerbate: to increase the severity, bitterness, or violence of; aggravate. To embitter the feelings of (a person); irritate; exasperate.
God explained that He is causing what is within people that displeases Him, to worsen. He’s drawing out what is hidden in people’s hearts. He’s creating conditions to force them to choose God or not; choose righteousness or not; choose repentance or not. Their dark sides are drawn out in situations He orchestrates. If they are going to repent and turn to God and allow Him to take them as clay in His hand, it will happen. If they are going to refuse what is true and right, then they will be responsible for that choice.
Without God’s intervention, it could take years and years (or it may never happen) for people to be put in these ultimatum situations. Because of God’s love for people, those who are in relationship with Him who have “dark sides” hidden within will be hastened to exposure, and to the opportunity to choose or reject righteousness.
This allows people who are waiting for loved ones, or even work or community relationships, to not be strung along any longer. It seems this releases them to move on. Rather than spend years or decades only to have a loved one, friend, peer or acquaintances turn away, God is causing the decisions to be made now.
In review, those who must repent and turn from their ways, will have an exacerbation of their conditions to reveal their wrongs. Out of hiding or denial, facing the wrong is forced.
Some relationships will be permanently severed if repentance is refused. That improves life for those choosing righteousness. (ameliorate) We think it’s better to retain certain relationships even if there is some darkness involved. Apparently, that’s often popular societal thinking, but not God’s way. I suppose it’s like poison, cancer, or a rotten apple — it’s ultimately better for the body or apples in the bushel, to remove that which refuses to be made right.
If repentance is not refused, sanctification will occur, which of course is the ideal and certainly improves life for all involved. (ameliorate, again)
Sanctification/ sanctify: to make holy; set apart as sacred; consecrate. To purify or free from sin: Sanctify your hearts.
This was quick and not fully developed, but I’m documenting this much for now.
I hope this is helpful for somebody out there. As you make relationship decisions in your life, may you be wise; be discerning; be firm; and if at all possible, be kind.
When you got to the statement, “I hope this is helpful for somebody out there,” I raised both hands! Holy Shiitake mushrooms!
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Well I’m certainly glad I posted it then, and now I’m craving mushrooms sauteed in butter and red wine!