(It is my good fortune to have some very good friends, who’ve understood what I’m trying to do. I ran the earlier post by one to get a reaction. Here’s how she responded. If you read the earlier post, you’ll probably understand this one was very difficult for me to do. I will continue to pray for my friend, encourage you to do likewise, and would welcome your thoughts. donkimrey)
I read the Jacob/Israel post you sent via email; and as always it’s in-depth and heartfelt. (I did recognize that it was very personal to you because of your very selfish friend.) I think the difference between your friend and Jacob (and David and Moses and all the others who made a mess of things!) is Jacob was willing and ready to accept the changes God offered and made in his life. Apparently, your friend is not.
Crudely put: God will not mess with our freewill.
He wants pliable, teachable hearts; not puppets on strings that He can control. God isn’t in the business of manipulation, is He?
You posed the question: “Do I give up on such an apparently lost cause from a purely human standpoint? How can I do that unless God does?” My answer would be you are not the Sovereign Almighty Limitless God. We are made in His image, but we are also humans with limited capabilities. You also commented that “he (your friend) continues using, hurting, disregarding and discarding those who really love him, moving on from one duped victim to the next.” Continue to lift him in prayer, certainly, but I would Really Encourage you to prayerfully consider the bruised, battered and bloody hearts of those victims of which you spoke. AND all of the ones he’s not yet met and duped. Perhaps it’s just me, Don, but my heart goes out to those folks. But you know, Don, one can only cry “victim” for so long. After a while “duped-victims” become “self-pitying-enablers.” And they become as diseased (perhaps even more so!) as the one victimizing.