An individual I know has made fun of me for doing my Bible studies and changing the way I live. At one time this person was quite helpful to me. He would take me to the store or the doctor appointments. But I started talking to him about why I was studying the Bible, and now, today, I received an e-mail from him stating that he felt he had done much more than his share of helping me, and would no longer be available. Do you think it may be possible I have turned him away, or is it that he, himself, has chosen to not want to hear these things about the Bible?

I kind of wonder if I went too far, as I do know he has problems believing anything about God. He mostly goes with the AA concept of a 'higher power'. Or is it that my changes in my life, has simply given him his way out of helping me anymore, as he may have gotten tired of giving? I tried hard to not impose on him any more than what was absolutely required, and I tried to also to give back. For example, this past week, he took me to another town, 60 miles away, to the doctor there. I bought him lunch. Granted, it was only a sandwich and soda and chips, but still, it was all I had. But I did that because I wanted to, and to show him a way of saying thank you.

I do realize that you don't have all the information you would need to make a firm conclusion, but maybe you might have some insight. (I have to add this. He is a recovering alcoholic, and sometimes, I have seen him in a very grouchy mood, due to not being able to settle with some of his issues. At these times, it is best to not even talk to him, until he sorts out what is bothering him. Otherwise, you might get your head bitten off. I have learned to leave him alone at these times.)

I do live in a small town with few or no services of certain kinds. Many doctor appointments have to be done in larger towns over 60-90 miles away. So, I realize it was quite a sacrifice for him, but in reality, I didn't ask him for help, he volunteered several times to help. A couple of times when I refrained from asking his help, he got upset with me for not asking. So, I am kind of confused. And sad. I am sorry if I made things worse for him. We have been friends for several years. I really don't want our friendship to end due to me being overbearing. I've tried not to be that way. But on the other hand, if he is choosing to end it because I have chosen to worship God according to the Bible, then I guess it must be. Maybe I should just let the friendship end.


I wonder if Jesus should have apologized to the Pharisees when they didn't want to hear what he said? It is an extreme example, but I hope you get the point. It seems to be human nature to blame ourselves when someone else makes a bad choice. Parents wonder if they shouldn't have grounded their wayward child who then turned on them. Children wonder if their parents divorced because of them. On and on we plague ourselves with our own doubts.

So let's put it in perspective. You had a friend who was very generous, taking you places he didn't have to. Now he has let you know that he won't be doing it anymore. Be appreciative for the unexpected kindness that you did receive. And now, you are only back to where you were before.

Since he didn't say why second-guessing him is not proper for me or for you. Neither of us has all the facts. "Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each one's praise will come from God" (I Corinthians 4:5).

Instead of wondering if you might have driven him off, wouldn't it be better to thank God that you had at least some opportunity to plant a seed of the Gospel before your contact with him ended? Telling someone about the Gospel is a gift to another person. What they chose to do with that gift is completely up to them. Remember what God told Ezekiel, "Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me: When I say to the wicked, 'You shall surely die,' and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul. Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die; because you did not give him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand. Nevertheless if you warn the righteous man that the righteous should not sin, and he does not sin, he shall surely live because he took warning; also you will have delivered your soul" (Ezekiel 3:17-21).

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