Q: I am a young man battling with my Christian faith. Growing up, I was the only one in my household who had a difficulty converting to Christianity as I did not want to conform to the morals and standards of the Christian journey because I found that life boring. However, I began attending church regularly in my late teens. I found myself getting closer to God, especially through my exciting Sunday school classes. The classes were engaging and fruitful. The teacher was the main reason the class was so real to me and uplifting. He portrayed Christ-like qualities, and knew how to express and share the joy he found in the Lord. He went the extra mile to guide me and helped with my decision to be baptized. I was now on the right path, ready to fulfill God’s purpose for me. I believe God placed him in my life. He was an excellent example to how to follow Christ.
I moved to a different parish because of my job, and while there, I found it difficult to find a church. I kept in touch with my old Sunday school teacher, especially when my Christian journey got rough. It is a rough journey. I am trying hard to keep the faith, but that changed one night.
While on vacation, I went out with my non-Christian friends. I had a few drinks too many, and we ended up at a strip club. I felt guilty the entire time I was there and wanted to leave. But when I decided that this place was not for me, I noticed a familiar face in a corner of the strip club. To my amazement, it was my old Sunday school teacher! I immediately walked over to him where I pushed away one of the women. I didn’t have the strength to utter any words. He quickly grabbed my hand and took me outside, trying to formulate some kind of explanation, but failed. He was the one person I could count on to make sure I was doing what was right in the Lord. Now, I am lost and confused and I do not know who I can trust or believe in. How do I find my way back to Christ?
A: The arm of flesh will fail you, so you dare not trust your own. Your Sunday school teacher is not perfect, just like you. He struggles with temptations similar to your struggles. In fact, it is part of human nature to struggle with temptation for the rest of one’s life. Failure to meet the standards of God does not mean one is not a Christian. It means one has fallen short of the Glory of God. Sometimes, we even rebel against God’s will. God is always willing to forgive our failures and sins. God wants erring human beings to be sorry for their wrong actions and pledge to do better.
PUT CONFIDENCE IN GOD
Your confidence should not be in any preacher or Sunday school, but in God. You will need the support of others in the Christian journey. You need to engage in spiritual exercises of meditation, reading of the Bible, prayer and alms-giving. This will make you stronger to continue the Christian walk.
Don’t condemn your Sunday school teacher because you saw him at the strip club. It is better to try to understand him and encourage him to walk the straight and narrow path.
All the best on your spiritual journey.
Courtesy of the Editor (Jamaica Gleaner)