I traveled all day today from Texas back home to NC. In between flights here and there and while 36000 feet up in the air I listened to worship music, I read part of a book I downloaded about a man who had a near death experience, and I listened for God's voice... I posed questions, I received answers, I reflected on His mercy, His grace and His great Love... its a typical day of travel for me lately. I read posts from tweets to facebook, to alternative news sources, and so on.
Some things started to glare out at me, some things started to get my attention and as they did, I felt anger rising up within me, because I began to see so clearly what I have been guilty of and saw so clearly how people who call themselves Christians literally are prostituting God's word and it caused pure rage to well up inside me. Then as I pondered it more, my heart began to break, and in silence while I surveyed the view from 36000 feet up, I cried.
We are so quick to point out the wrongs in others, their sin, their faults, their shortcomings - and the more I see it the more angry I become because that is NOT the character of the Jesus I know. The same Jesus who died for all those sins, those faults - the same Jesus who was crucified for us all who suffered long and hard, who was ridiculed, mocked, and spit on.
Who was called names and rejected.
One thing He has been working on teaching me lately is a question I have at the forefront of my mind and that is ... How do we reach others, without condemning them, without alienating them? It is so easy to see the speck in someone else's eye, but fail to see the log in our own. I for one, have lived a life of constantly criticizing myself, constantly judging myself - and I will admit I have been guilty of doing the same to others. But I learned a long time ago if I spent more time surveying my own life, my own spiritual well being or lack thereof, there is NO time to worry about someone else. I mean really - as I said recently on a facebook post, as Paul did... I am chief among sinners...
I thought about the recent outcome of the Presidential election and while I will be the first to admit that I fully believe the majority of our administration and President are anti-christian, I also am reminded that each and every one who make up that administration, even the President himself, are all of God's creations...and while some will hate to admit it or even believe it... God loves them also. Just like He loves the sinner and the saint, the murderer, the whore, the adulterer and the homosexual.
Does that mean He accepts their sin, NO, but He accepts them as they are, just as He has accepted me as I am...and I am so eternally grateful for that. Because of that acceptance and that love, I am drawn toward Him, not apart from Him. I am getting to know Him, and through that growing and developing relationship I am being led into all truth... and as that truth becomes my reality, I am changing and being transformed into what He intends for me to be.
And so I come to the bone of contention the thing that brings me to tears... so many people who call themselves Christian are the very ones who give Christianity a bad name. Constantly pointing out their faults and rehashing, reliving, and reminding all who have given them their ear - what others are doing will be doing and have done wrong and against God. This my friends, is not the character of Jesus Christ, this is not the example He gave for living a Godly and holy life, it is not what He intended. And in my best estimate is a great sin. If you read your bible, over and over, you should get the major theme....and it was not about "fixing people" or condemning people, it was about redemption about getting to know the person and character of Jesus Christ, likewise the very nature and character of God. It was about RELATIONSHIP, not retaliation. Not ridicule and rejection.
I imagined a story of a bus driver, who's only job was to get a busload of people to a place where they would receive healing, restoration, help, clothing, food, encouragement.... a busload of outcasts that needed what only the destination provided. The bus driver was trusted, intelligent, and perceived to be Godly by those who didn't know God, and therefore they were quick to get on the bus and allow the driver to take them to the "promised land"... where the hungry would be fed, the sick would be healed, and the unloved, loved.
However, along the way, the bus driver, being the "authority" in all things God - made several stops along the way to show these needy people all the wrongs taking place in the world - he or she stopped along the way when they saw someone picketing, someone with signs up for gay rights, or the politicians whose lies were being aired throughout all the media... "Look over here he would say, look at what they are doing, and those folks over there, they killed innocent babies last week at that abortion clinic, and look here those people never go to church, they act like Christians on sunday and live like the devil on the weekend... and the passengers were engaged and listend and started to become focused on all those things and the sin in other peoples lives... before you knew it, they had stopped 20 different times along the way with a sick fascination of what others were doing and weren't doing.
Along this journey, the hungry starved the death, those that needed clothing died from being in the elements, those that needed healing grew more sick and some perished. Those that were discouraged, become even more discouraged - some who had felt rejected, felt it even more having identified with some of the protesters who were gay. A mother on the bus who spent time at the abortion clinic while the driver detailed what a partial birth abortion was, felt so guilty she committed suicide because she took her own baby's life years before... needless to say the bus took many detours and when they finally reached their destination only a few were left, everyone else had perished, either got off the bus, or were to afraid to continue on.... and the worse part.... when they finally arrived The Great Physician, had left, His time was up, He could wait no longer - healing, comfort, peace and love were no where to be found.
The bus driver himself, felt he had done his duty and arrived safely and felt proud that he had pointed out all these things, sharing the "truth" as it were... but when he stepped off the bus, ready to meet his maker - he heard a loud voice... depart from me I never knew you...
37 "Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'40 "The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'
41 "Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.' 44 "They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' 45 "He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.' 46"Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."
God has revealed so clearly to me through his audible voice, through His word, and through my own life experience, that OUR job is to lead people to Him, and it is through His love, that people will be changed, His love and His word, will be the light that separates the darkness, not our legalistic condemnation, or constantly finding fault....or constant judgment of others. If we cannot express the Love of God, then how in the world do you think condemning someone and pointing out their transgressions are going to lead them to Him? It will never happen.
People who constantly do this, are treading on thin ice with God... because so many people are distracted from God, they are being put on a detour to hell and their blood will be on your hands. I was so disgusted to the point of being nauseated as I read things people point out over and over and over again. They have this sick fascination with the letter of the law, and lack the spirit of it. There is no light in them even though they quote scripture and justify it by saying its the "truth".... the truth is WE ALL FALL SHORT OF THE GLORY OF GOD.
What we focus our attention on and what comes out of our mouths is revealing the very thing that lies within our hearts. And I tell you, those that speak of these evils and constantly cause people to be reminded of their own sin, or those of others - I want to stay away from, I want no part of, because there is no light within them... they obviously do not know the Love of God... on the other hand, those seeking repentance and who are constantly evaluating their own walk with God, and who are constantly reminded that they themselves are wretched, naked and blind...and have a spirit of humility about them - they will get my attention.
They will be and are most likely the true saints - they are people after God's own heart.
Do not be deceived folks! It breaks my heart that the enemy uses these legalistic "christians" to pollute and prostitute the very testimony of Jesus Christ.
One of the first commandments God gave us, and I have written about it before, is to LOVE THY NEIGHBOR AS THYSELF - and don't give me the BS that this is "tough love"... go back and read your bible and get to know Jesus the Christ, Jesus the redeemer, Jesus who came not only to give us life but to give it more abundantly.... and when you get to know Him truly know Him and His great love and realize His mercies are new every day, His grace is sufficient and His love knows NO BOUNDS.... then let us reason with one another, rightly dividing the truth - When HE is the focus, all those things that seek to exalt themselves above Him and the testimony of Christ, will dissolve in His presence and only His presence, not yours.
My neighbor is anyone on the face of this planet... not those within a certain political party, not those without what I perceive to be as sin, or those of a different color, creed or religion.
He is giving me boldness to speak out and about these matters, and I promise you, as He is my witness, if you continue to walk in this darkness and use His word to cast stones, you will be stripped naked and the true nature of your heart will be revealed for all the world to see - you will be brought to your knees and my heart aches for yours. Because the stench of the rotting spirit within you will be so evident, you will no longer hide behind you self proclaimed righteousness and your holier than thou mentality. Repent now and ask for forgiveness.
It is LOVE and ONLY Love that will bring others into His kingdom and if you are incapable of understanding that, or know what that is, I suggest you get on your knees before God and cry out to Him to reveal the darkness in your own heart, before you distract and lead so many away from Him through condemnation and constant judgment. No man or woman can change another, only God can. I don't recall Him telling me either through His word or through his commands, that He has endowed anyone with the power it takes to set the captives free, except Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit.
If this offends someone reading, good. It has served its purpose. I will fight this twisted use of His word and what He stands for to my death if thats what it takes.
I know what its like to be utterly rejected, I know the pain of what it feels like when you have been made not to feel good enough to even be in His presence because of others. I know what its like to be told by your own parents - "we will disown you if we have to"... If you are Christian - just as I say this to myself, it is high time we start BEING one, and stop acting like one. Our days are numbered and I for one will not sit around and tolerate the attack I see so many self proclaimed Christians making against others who need us, who are hungry for the truth, who need to be loved and accepted, who are hungry and need to be fed.
Love one another at all costs, especially your pride, your self appointed righteousness. God will not tolerate it much longer. His love will reveal all truth and it is His love, not your corrupted idea of love or tough love that will lead them anywhere but to condemnation and hell, and He is clear that because of this their blood will be on your hands.
And I will repeat to all, especially those who seek their knowledge from fallible men and women, who think they can get it through going to church on Sunday, or reading some religious person's posts on facebook or tweets - you need to seek God, directly, not indirectly.
For if you seek Him you WILL find Him, but not until then. You will never be known by God, through someone else, you will never have a RELATIONSHIP with God if all you do is sing about Him, read about or listen to others talk about Him. You must, I repeat YOU MUST seek Him for yourselves. He will reveal the mysteries to you Himself, through His word and through His spirit. Not me, not you momma not your pastor or your best friend, or that religious person who is constantly pointing out the sin in other's peoples lives. Stay away from them... and when you have grown up in God, not in Church, and pray for discernment, then you will know what is true and what isn't... then you will see with open eyes and have ears to hear.
God Bless you all!