27 To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
28 Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.
29 For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me. - Colossians 1:27-29
Proclaiming the gospel to those in our lives can be defeating. We know from scripture that those who do not believe literally think Scripture is ridiculous - they cannot see the Truth. For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. - 1 Corinthians 1:18. It can be frustrating and heartbreaking to try to speak truth into the life of an unbeliever because they are blind to the truth.
Even with a better understanding of the unbelievers in my life, the reality of this verse is still difficult to swallow at times. To acknowledge our loved ones perishing, or to live in close contact with those challenging people who represent everything about this broken world we live in, or to struggle with professed believers who do not seem to be acting in accordance with His will, it can all be so heart breaking. We have to remember that we "are being saved" as this verse tells us, we are still a work in process as well. We wouldn't have those unbelievers in our lives if it wasn't a part of His plan, and we would have to rub up against those difficult people in our lives if it wasn't for our good as we are "being saved".
He is refining us and growing us for our good in all of those interactions. We need to stop fighting or avoiding them, but rather lean into them and let Him grow us through those interactions. How we respond defines our heart, and it must represent the cross to all who witness.
For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. - 2 Corinthians 4:6 This verse helps us to understand the process. God shines His light into our hearts, and this is what brings us the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. The God who created light at the very beginning of time does the same thing in the human heart, but instead of it being physical light, it is the light that brings the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is this light that allows us to see the truth, and to receive Christ for who He really is. Without it, we are nothing. Without it, we are foolish and bitter, and we struggle to find purpose or true connection and love in this world. Without that light, we are blind and perishing.
This is where those unbelieving people we love are at, whether they acknowledge it or not. This is where those difficult people who challenge us at every turn are at, whether they are willing to listen to the truth or not. This is even where those people who profess to be believers, but who's actions say differently are even at - they are blind to the fact that the light is not shining into a dark part of their hearts. They all simply cannot see, and as heart breaking as that is, we must keep that in the forefront of our minds as we interact with them.
Our greatest desire should only be to that the light to shine in their hearts so they see and receive Christ, and prayer is our greatest weapon in that battle. On my knees this morning praying that His light shines brightly on every unbeliever we collectively know. This is what I want for them - that He shines the light of the knowledge of the glory of God and Jesus Christ on all of them.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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