“That isn’t very Christian of you,” she said. The words alone were enough to plunge into my heart like a jagged blade. But she even said it with a disappointed, confident tone. My work friend knew I was a Christian. She knew I was in love with Jesus. She had heard me confess my love for him a million times, and now she was telling me I wasn’t very Christian.
You see, I was gossiping at work. My flesh and own desires had kicked in full force and I was letting my coworker know a million different reasons why I did not want a peer of mine to become my superior. I had been worrying about her possible promotion because I didn’t think she was a professional person. As embarrassed as I am to admit it now, she just rubbed me wrong.
As I sat there completely exposed and convicted about my words, I thought of a rebuttal and quickly spat out; “Just because I am Christian doesn’t mean I am perfect, only Jesus is perfect! Christians make mistakes!”. As true as those words were, I knew I had crossed the line. I would have never said what I said about her in front of her, and I certainly would have never said it if I had been speaking in the Spirit. My words would have hurt her deeply, scarred her, and made her insecure. Women can be so nasty to each other. I was nasty!
Another part of my sin had been very disturbing to me. The coworker whom I was talking to wasn’t a “Christian”. God showed me that day how detrimental gossip could be to all parties involved. My actions were proving to my friend how hypocritical believers could be. Aren’t we supposed to be different, set apart?
The truth is yes, Christians should be different. But as all Christians know, we too wrestle with our flesh and sin. We want to look good to others . We want to be thought of as awesome by all! Our Heavenly Father calls us to not conform to this world (Romans 12:2), to have righteousness that only comes from Jesus Christ (Romans 3:27), be slow to speak (James 1:19), and to imitate God (Ephesians 5:1).
I beared my ugly inside to you, friends, to encourage you to be examples to the world. Do not gossip openly or attempt to prove yourself. People are watching, listening, judging, imitating and perceiving. Strive to imitate God in all you do, so that others know that you are different. When you fall short, and feel that dagger of conviction in your heart, know that the Father loves you and forgives you. I see him smiling and pushing us along with his gigantic warm hands, “go ahead he whispers.”
“Try again my child”.
Hayley Pena, 32, is not your everyday Cali beach girl. Although blonde, tan, and covered in sand, Hayley’s past goes much deeper than that.
When Hayley was twenty she found herself in drug rehab and pregnant. This is when she met Jesus. She began to learn who she was truly created to be.
Hayley’s twelve-year journey with God has been blessed. She married the man of her dreams and together they have four beautiful children. Her family which includes her very large extended family, is her biggest blessing.
Hayley, has followed in her biggest hero’s footsteps. She pursued a career in nursing just like her mom! She currently works in an intensive care unit and feels privileged to serve God at the bedside.
In between caring for her family and patients, Hayley serves in her home church in a ministry for mothers. Come and visit MomSpace Centerpoint Church Murrieta for more details and encouragement.
Hayley’s main goal in life is loving on, and encouraging other humans to have a closer relationship with their creator. She would be honored if you would follow her and her crazy family life on Instagram @hayleypena