24 February 2009

Preaching To the Choir

I say that because I'm speaking to myself as much as to anyone else...

Whether or not you believe in Karma or "The Golden Rule" is irrelevant.
We are instructed, as Christians -- indeed, as civilized human beings -- to treat others how we want to be treated.
I, as much as anyone, still fail at this, miserably.

All too often, my own pride and SELF get in the way of the "bigger picture" Christ wants me to see. I am easily bruised, taking offense when I feel I have been wronged unfairly.
My feelings get hurt and I start to obsess about what I coulda, woulda, shoulda done differently. Or worse, I lash out at the people who I feel have so unjustly caused me aggravation.

I'm also a bit of a perfectionist. I take pride in being responsible and following instructions I am given, so when I feel like I have let someone down -- or that I have somehow overstepped my bounds -- I get pretty upset and boldly defensive.
Goodness knows, the reprimands have been well-deserved at times and I have been humbled by the grace shown to me over and again.
But at other times, I catch myself being less than forgiving when I feel other people have slighted ME.
Really, who do I think I am??

Acts 10: 34 (KJV) states that God is NO respecter of persons.

That means, it doesn't matter what you do for a living, how much money you make, what your position in the church may be, or how much you do for charity.
We are all valuable in God's sight and we should treat each other as such.

I think one thing that has done more to harm the image of the Christian Church -- more than anything else -- is the way we so-called "Christians" treat others whom we consider "beneath" us.

If Jesus showed us one thing, plainly, in His short time here on earth, it's that we must humble ourselves to be great. He was the Son of God and yet, He washed the feet of His disciples and treated everyone -- no matter how small or (by society's definition) insignificant -- as precious sheep to bring in to His fold.
There was no attitude of thinking, "I'm better than you," or "You aren't worth my time."
If Jesus is meant to be the example we are to live by, then why do so many Christians do the opposite?

We get full of ourselves and our "positions of importance" and we don't even deign to speak to others in the Church who are not in our "circle of influence."
We might treat the poor and homeless better and as more valuable than we do that church nursery worker or this parking volunteer. We may think because we've been entrusted with great responsibility within our area of ministry that we no longer have to be Jesus to those within our own ministry.

I think this goes on way too much and it needs to STOP.

Again, I am speaking to myself as much as anyone.
Lord knows I need His grace and constant reminders to get over myself and treat others the way Christ would treat them.
If my actions don't loudly proclaim that I am a child of God -- an heir to His kingdom -- then
NOTHING I "say" with my mouth will ever be heard.

As my friend, Carole, often says: "Grace to ME."


Wendy Lucio said...

Funny that we seem to have the same things on our mind today! You just put yours into words so much better! Grace to us both! Love you and your honesty!

LAMEIS said...