"Take care, brethren, that there not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God. But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin." Heb 3:12-13
We all know people who at one time seemed to be devout Christians full of the love of God who then began to drift and ultimately fall away all together. This is a bigger tragedy than if they had never met the Lord in the first place.
There are many things that could account for such a tragedy. Some have bad experiences in their church, experienced soured relationships or the loss or departure of a loved one or distraction by the world. These and other events and circumstances are not uncommon occurrences and when we see them happening to our brothers and sisters, it is incumbent upon us to be hyper vigilant to encourage, refresh and relieve.
Departing from God is called apostasy. It is in effect, turning one's back on Him and no longer acknowledging him as Father and Creator. It is a complete rejection of the Divine. The consequences for such a decision are unimaginable and should be avoided at all costs.
Beloved it is true that sometimes the going gets tough. Christ himself warned of this truth. But our relationship with God is made for such times. It is He who provides comfort, reassurance and peace (if we will allow it). It is He that holds us up when we are unable to stand on our own. It is He who is the compassionate one. Part of his provision are those who are strong in the faith. He has commissioned us to be His presence in a time of need.
Let us pursue with all vigor the dual responsibilities of remaining faithful and doing all we can to help others do likewise.
Rejoicing in the Lord,