Thursday, July 02, 2009

Thoughts From My Heart

It is funny how you will talk about a situation or a truth in life and the principle of that particular matter fits all sorts of different situations in life. They are like parables of each other.

I have been pondering something for a bit now. I keep wanting to write it down, but it has not totally unraveled itself in my head yet. I spoke with a friend this morning. She brought up something in her life that went right along with what I have been chewing on. Then I read a post by Amy. It was on mothers and dealing with children. In her post she quoted Rick, whose post was on pitch (as in singing). :) Here is his quote:

Wisdom does not choose a particular approach and champion it over the alternatives. Instead, wisdom works to understand the pros and cons of each individual choice. It looks to understand how particular choices interact to produce results, sometimes unexpected ones. It considers how wishful thinking can lead us to make poor choices, hoping that things will somehow turn out for the best. It distinguishes between practical matters and pragmatism. It recognizes that when no perfect path is available and knowledge is incomplete, it is often helpful to reserve judgment on what appear to be poor choices that others have made. Most important, it does not refuse to participate in projects that are less than ideal, but applies itself to bring whatever improvements it can to whatever circumstances present themselves.

Life is about change. It is a journey. We are all fellow travelers and we are all at different places at different times. As my Grandma used to say, "It takes all kinds to make a world." How many times, when we meet someone, do we try to put them in a box. For instance... you meet a Christian at the park. What is one of the first things you ask... "What church do you go to?" Oh, they are Baptist. Oh, they are Catholic. Oh, they are Mennonite. Then we feel we "know" all about them. Why do we do that? It makes us more comfortable if we define them by something.

I realize that there are Bible truths. These are fundamental and unchanging. There are a lot of fringe things in the Bible that have people on both sides of the fence. I have one friend that believes that sugar is demonic. I have other friends that have a sugary dessert almost every night. They are both Christians, both love the Lord and both read the same Bible. I hear people who have one really strong particular belief. A belief that they are entitled to. However, they hammer away at it so strongly that they run people off. I know many people who feel like any Bible but the authorized KJV is not really a Bible at all. I have no problem with them believing that. However, if they come off so strong on that ONE topic it almost looks like an idol in their life. I know many people who are strong Christians and love and serve the Lord who read other versions. With some people it is wearing dresses only, or no make up, or their stance on divorce and re-marriage, the head covering, quiverful, etc. If they study it out and believe it that is between them and God. It is not their job to be a Holy Spirit to the rest of the people. I see them do that and cringe for them and for those they send running. I need to be looking in my own life. Where do "I" do this to others. Is there something in my life that I harp on over and over. I am ashamed to admit I know I have in the past. I probably still do and I need to pray and ask the Lord to show me where.

How many times do we have things in our lives that change. I know someone who used to be dead set against a Christian woman wearing pants for any reason. If someone mentioned that they wore pants to do some chore, they let them know that there was nothing that could not be done in a dress. They never quite called it sin, but you KNEW that they put it in that category. That particular person now wears pants and shorts much of the time.

The friend I was talking to this morning shared something in her life that has happened in mine. We have taken some hard lines on some issues in the past. Things we no longer adhere to. In our self-righteousness of that time, we judged those around us or many times just made them feel judged by our actions and words. She and her family went a step further than we did and they wrote a letter of apology to their family. It gave them an opening to share and really touched at least one member of the family.

If I have a conviction on anything in my life, I need to live it out. Maybe I need to not vocalize it though, unless someone asks me about it. I need to love those around me. I need to reach out to those who do it a bit different than I do. I don't need to judge them by what I believe. If someone shares with me a struggle they have, I need to try to understand where they are coming from. I need to HEAR them, not just listen to them and then give them a pat Christian answer. I can be so good at that.

We are coming to a place in this country where there may be some hard times for Christians. We need to draw together as the body of Christ, not divide by our differences.


Nancy said...

I too have been guilty of this in the past and so pray that God shows me where and when I still do it today. I remind myself that I have been at very many places in the road along this journey. The Lord has never forsaken me in one of them. I pray that we can all realize this and come together as the Body of Christ. And, your right. We may need to. This can only be a good thing.

Teresa said...

I enjoyed this insightful post tremendously. What a joy to be traveling a path together and helping one another along the way instead of saying "my shoes are better than yours."

Anonymous said...

Great post Marci.

Lynn Bartlett said...

A friend and I were just talking about this last week, and we were both convicted about watching our words. Thanks for sharing your heart.