3.22.2012

Thoughts for Thursday: I am NOT the Holy Spirit

And now we come to Thoughts for Thursday. Enjoy the thoughts: 

It's really easy to spot sin in others, isn't it?  It's not hard to determine when someone else is being impatient, letting their anger take control, acting selfishly, or being prideful.  Of course, identifying those sins in our own lives is a little more difficult.  That in and of itself is an indication of pride.

Regardless, if you spend any amount of time in close quarters with another individual, you'll see their sin and quickly.  It doesn't matter if they're your roommate, your sibling, or your spouse; no matter how much you love them, and no matter how wonderful they are, they are going to sin and you are going to see it.

And if you're anything like I am, you're going to want them to fix it.  Maybe it's for the right reasons-- because you want to see them overcome their sin and grow in their relationship with the Lord, ever maturing into the individual God wants them to become.  Or maybe sometimes it's a more selfish reason-- you want them to be as perfect as possible so your environment can be as perfect as possible and your life will be easier.

Well that's a whole other bag of worms, isn't it?

Hband doesn't sin any more than I do, or even any differently than I do, but I've found myself in an argument with him more times than I'd like, sometimes because I've identified sin and won't relent in confronting it until he sees it too.  And admittedly, this argument probably spawns and lingers from my self-righteousness and pride.

Confrontation isn't bad; in fact, if you never confront sin when you see it, that's a problem too.  Woman up and say something in love.  But the problem is my attitude and my unrelenting confrontation.  The problem is, like my wise friend (and soon-to-be-bride) said, "I am not his Holy Spirit."

The Holy Spirit was given as a helper, with the purpose of sanctifying the believer and acting as a guide-- MORE than "conscience," since even unbelievers have a God-given conscience.  He gives believers the ability to actually say "no" to sin.  He is the one who brings conviction that inspires repentance.  That is NOT me.

{John 14:16-18; 16:23-15; Romans 8:5-11, 13-16, 26-27}

My job isn't to relentlessly hound Hband or anyone else until they see their sin and repent.  Why?  Because Hband has the Holy Spirit, and He is working in my husband as much as he is working in me.  It's my responsibility to point out sin in a loving way, but beyond that, it's between him and the Lord.  Instead of all the energy I've spent arguing and convincing, perhaps I should apply that energy to identifying my own sin and repenting of it.

I think it's probably a control thing.  I want to control my environment, and in order to that, I want to control Hband's behavior.  But again, that's not my job.  He has been placed by God as my authority, and one does not argue and relentlessly badger their authority; that is disrespectful.  Besides-- he doesn't do that to me, and I'm JUST as sinful as he.

So... this is something about which I've been thinking over the last couple of days.  I'm working out how I will learn this in a practical way.  Any suggestions?  Do you struggle with this?  What has worked for you?

xoxo, A