Yesterday, after speaking to a group of adults, an attractive gal in her late 20’s came up and asked if she could meet with me. She wanted to be discipled. She looked so sincere. So innocent… so helpless.
“My wife is excellent at discipling,” I replied. “No, but you are really good,” she responded. “Well, I don‘t meet with women on a personal basis,” I explained. “But I need your help,” she persisted.
“No… but let me introduce you to Ruth.” And with that I pointed her to my wife and turned away.
This morning as I reflected back on that conversation, I wrote down the names of ten spiritually powerful men whom I’ve known over the years who got derailed in their walk with God: Missionaries, leaders in Christian circles, winners of souls, authors of Christian books, etc.
One fell over a money issue: Cheated people in his business.
Two developed huge egos over “successful” ministries. Became unteachable. One of the two fell into adultery.
Another, in his struggle for acceptance, allowed himself the luxury of letting women fawn over him. Some, (against his wife’s wishes) he counseled through correspondence. In time, he too fell into adultery.
A couple of others, it appears, just went out and played around. Seemed to need a “fix” now and then.
One got into trouble with his buddy’s wife.
Another got sexually involved through counseling a distressed marriage in his neighborhood.
And finally, one fellow who traveled a great deal simply could not resist the temptations on the road.
And where are they today? Two died prematurely, while still in their 40’s. Seven divorced.
None have regained their previous stature or standing in the community
I am reminded of Solomon’s warning, “The evil deeds of a wicked man ensnare him… He will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own folly.” (Proverbs 5:22a, 23)
QUESTION: In relating to the opposite sex, do you immediately “nip in the bud” the slightest opportunity for cultivating imprudent thoughts or behavior that ultimately could lead to actions you would live to regret? If the answer is not an immediate “yes,” what do you think that reveals about the condition of your spiritual life?