187. Choosing a Different Path

“As I have mentioned before,” Stan began, “I used to play golf with a men’s group fairly regularly one day a week.”

“When I did that,” he continued, “I was also part of a group of Christians who got together before we played golf.”

“That’s nice,” I said.  “What did you do?”

“We usually read a devotional and discussed it.  We would pray for one another.  It wasn’t a long time, usually less than 30 minutes, but it was a great time of fellowship.  And it set the stage for a round of golf that would bring glory to God.”

“How many were usually there?” I asked.

“Not as many as should have been,” was Stan’s response.

Continuing, he said, “There are some guys who I know are believers but they chose not to be part of that fellowship group because they didn’t want to be seen as being too different by people whose opinions really didn’t matter in the whole big picture.”

“Really?”

“Yes, really.  One day I rode around with one of my friends who I know goes to church regularly, and even sings in the choir.  I asked him if he knew about the group of guys who got together for fellowship before playing golf.”

“What did he say?”

“He said that he knew about the group, but didn’t want some of his other friends to see him there and think he was some kind of super-religious guy.  He said he had overheard some people talking about the guys in the group and making fun of them.  He didn’t want anyone making fun of him.”

“How did you respond to that?”

“Carefully.  It was obvious that he was not where I thought he might be in his relationship with God.  I did not want him to go off thinking I was judgmental of him, so I mainly encouraged him to give some thought to the matter.  I suggested he talk to God about it.”

“Has he joined the group?”

“Not yet,” was Stan’s reply, “but I am still praying for him.  And God is not done with him!”

_____________________________________

The arrogant utterly deride me, yet I do not turn away from your law.  Psalm 119:51.

Prayer:  Lord, you know how easy it is for me to be intimidated by those who do not know you.  That is the exact opposite of what you want and expect.  You want me to say, along with the Apostle Paul, that I am not ashamed of the Gospel.  Help me, Lord, to always be bold for you and to choose to be the person you intend for me to be.  Help me to put your opinion as the most important aspect of my life.  Thank you I can and do come before you in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

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