Bill got scared when the pastor told him, “Why don’t you tell them about your own struggle?” Bill had asked the pastor to talk to his two sons who were becoming alcohol abusers. When he heard the pastor’s challenge, this physically big man turned to emotional jelly. You see, he was a recovering alcoholic but had never told his children of his own struggle with alcoholism. “I can’t do that! If I did that they wouldn’t respect me.” Balderdash! It would make a huge impression that they would never forget. They needed to hear from their father that he understood what they were going through. He could warn them from personal experience that “if you continue going down this path it will eventually destroy you and your relationship with God.”
Paul says that presenting the good news clearly also means warning people of their sin. We are lovingly to warn our Christian brothers and sisters when they drift away from what God desires. It’s hard, but they need it.
One qualification: if you are eager to warn someone about what is wrong in their life, and you don’t have a tear in your eye, perhaps you’re not the one to do it.
Father help me to love my friends enough to warn them of danger. Amen.