Scripture Reading: I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. 1 Corinthians 3:6-7 (NIV)
I was listening to a radio show, where the caller was expressing her frustration to the host regarding her husband gaining 60 lbs since they got married 7 years ago. The caller wanted advice on how to convince her husband he needed to lose weight in a loving way. This conversation reminded me of many I have had in the past with my father regarding his health, mainly with smoking cigarettes.
My father has smoked cigarettes for longer than I have been alive, 32+ years. A few weeks ago, he called me with so much pride and excitement in his voice to share that he had been 4 days smoke- free, Praise God! To a regular person, that may not seem like such a big deal. But all things considered, 4 days smoke-free after 32+ years of smoking, that’s a HUGE deal.
Over the years, I can recall having countless conversations with my father about his health and needing to quit smoking. He has even attempted to do so a number of times in the past, and for whatever reason, he reverted back to his old ways. This change all boils down to my father wanting it bad enough for himself.
One of the biggest mistakes we make with our loved ones is we want to see change in them when we desire for them to change. We see a problem, know the solution, will communicate that to someone and expect them to move forward with the advise that was given right then. But as ideal as that situation sounds, often times it doesn’t work that way.
Our scripture reading comes from 1 Corinthians 3, where Paul is speaking on this exact topic. He is referencing to ministers and how we should accept them as instruments used by God. You too are to be a minister of God. But you never want to get in the way of what He wants to do in the life of someone else.
The process of change, often times, is birthed from a number of events or actions that multiple people contributed to. The reason that is, is because God will not share His glory, Isaiah 42:8. When you are the sole person that inspires change in someone else, there is the potential that you can become a god to them. This is why the word of God tells us in 1 Corinthians 3: 7, So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.
The biggest things we can do to help someone that is in a destructive state is pray for them and believe that God is working on their behalf through a number of different avenues. And then love them wholeheartedly in their current state. We have to understand that God’s ways and plans are far beyond anything we can even comprehend, Isaiah 55:8-9. And trust Him to do what He is the expert in doing, changing lives.
Prayer: God, You are amazing. Thank You so much for this truth. I never what to get in the way of what You are doing or take any of Your glory. Forgive me for wanting to play God in the lives of my loved ones. Now, I ask You to remind me to remain faithful in prayer for them and love them with my whole heart right where they are. In Jesus name, Amen!