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The Rev. John Gunn The Rev. John Gunn
The 20th Century produced many outstanding writers. One whose literary accomplishment stands as a living monument is the pastor, newspaper columnist and author, John R. Gunn (1877-1956). On a wide variety of subjects he left us an abundance of messages that warm the soul and touch the heart.

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Restoring Others

March 28, 2011

We all have friends who've gotten into trouble. We judge them harshly or gently depending on the circumstances and on our own personalities, had you ever realized that?

The way we judge others and treat them reveals a great deal about ourselves. Columnist John R. Gunn points out that, "It was exactly this, which the apostle Paul had in mind when he said, If any man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one. In other words, if you're really a strong character, with strong faith and deep spiritual understanding of God and man, you can help another find his way out of trouble."

What do you do with the friend who, in a moment of carelessness or temptation, gets into trouble with the laws of man or breaks the laws of God? You kick him out of your life and let him go? That may be the way some people would deal with him, but it is not the Christian way.

It's been said, "Man's greatest glory is not in never falling, but in getting up every time he falls" and your glory will be in helping that friend to get up after his fall. Give the unfortunate man another chance. With Christian encouragement and sympathy, his chances of recovering from the shame or embarrassment of his error are far greater than if you turn your back on him.

But helping an erring friend isn't easy, it's a delicate business. You will surely fail if you go about it in the 'holier than thou' attitude, but if you act from genuine concern, in a spirit of meekness considering thy self, lest thou also be tempted, both of you will be the stronger for it.

Given the kind of help you would like to receive yourself, the world may reject the fallen man, but the Christian reaches out and helps him to his feet again.


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