On July 4, 2023, one of the sweetest women I have ever known passed away unexpectedly. My friend and I decided to drop by her house so that I could offer my condolences to her daughter and grandson, as well as any other family members and friends. At the conclusion of our visit, I was led to pray with those who were present. Later that evening, my friend shared with me that when I finished praying, one of the gentlemen made a comment about me. He said, "She's the real deal." After the prayer, I heard a few remarks, but I didn't focus on them until after my friend told me about them.
I am not sharing the comment to give myself any accolade; I am sharing it because it reminded me of what we as believers need to do whenever we are in one another's presence and the presence of spiritual leaders. On the surface, the gentleman's comment may appear to be an accolade, but that's not what it was; it was an assessment. 1 John 4:1 says, "Don't believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit, but we must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God." (NLT); Scripture also says, "Just as we can identify a tree by its fruit, we can identify people by their actions." (Matthew 7:20). The gentleman was right to test my spirit. He was right to check out my fruit and assess whether or not he discerned that I was the "real deal."
My friend also told me that those who knew me confirmed I was "the real deal." This is also an excellent lesson; even when we "test" someone's spirit and inspect their fruit, we should not just go on what we assess. We must receive confirmation from others. We can be deceived and allow many things to get in the way of our assessment, whether good or bad. We all have had times when we thought we were discerning something bad about a person and discovered that we were wrong, and we've also had times when we thought we discerned something good about a person and realized we were wrong. We should always talk with trusted friends when discerning people's spirits to ensure that we are discerning accurately. The enemy can try and deceive us into believing that someone good is bad and that someone bad is good, so ask someone to help you discern rightly. This is what is required of the body of Christ.
As believers, we should all pray that when we meet people, pray for people, preach, teach God's Word, encourage people, visit the sick, lead others, and witness to others that when we leave those encounters, someone will have assessed our spirits and inspected our fruit and say that we are the "real deal" because our "realness" is a testimony that our God is real! It's all for His Glory and His glory alone!
Get Ready! Over the next few weeks, my blog posts will be related to the book of Job! Journey with me.
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