Even the mistakes you make when serving the Lord are beautiful and edifying.
One morning last week, I met my cousin for coffee to talk about the way of the world and spiritual things. I have always admired his fortitude in walking with the Lord. He spent years devoted to prayer. He goes to a homeless mission every week to pray for and with people. He takes Paul’s advice literally; he prays without ceasing. (Me, on the other hand, I need to be hit over the head every day to remind me to pray. The habits of sin are so ingrained in me that they created a rut along the road, a gutter, that I find easier to navigate than the high road.)
For about the past year, my cousin has been experiencing a good deal of pain in his lower back. He had a bit of trouble walking when we went into the coffee shop. After our conversation, as we were leaving, he walked rather quickly towards the restroom and in the process spilled some of the water he was carrying. A puddle about the size of a person’s head formed on the ground. The image it left reminded me of any number of monstrances I’ve seen holding the Eucharist, the Body of Christ. I snapped a picture of it, and a little voice said (aka, a thought came into my head) “Even the mistakes my servants make are good.”
The corollary is true, that even the good that we do outside of service to God ends up being bad.
So much of what people do with good intentions ends up destroying.
- People think they are doing good by defending abortion. It’s good for women to have the right to choose, but the end result is that 45% of all deaths worldwide are now from abortion.
- People think they are doing good to forcefully promote racial equity and justice, but the end result is the disillusionment of millions of Americans and the trampling of so many rights of conscience.
- People think they are doing good to defend the LGBTQ+ movement, but the end result is that sex addiction is being overlooked. Harmful sexual behaviors are defended as normal, and sex addicts are left to drown in an ocean of unloving acceptance. It has also resulted in an increase in pedophilia. That’s apparently what the + stands for.
I don’t know how to confront anyone, mostly the Left, about the harm they are doing with their good intentions. Paul says, “Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feeble minded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit.” In 1 Thesselonians 5
All I can say is quench not the spirit in you. Carry water with you to keep the spirit hydrated, and if you spill it, even that mistake will be pleasing to God and edifying to others.