14 Do everything without grumbling and arguing, 15 so that you may be blameless and pure, children of God who are faultless in a crooked and perverted generation, among whom you shine like stars in the world.
There are a lot of people that seem to have plenty to grumble about, but what good does it do? Little if any at all. We all have issues, some of us could sell our life story to soap opera writers, I personally have grumbled more than my fair share, and I have had some decent reasons to grumble compared to many. Yet I have it better than a huge portion of the planet. I used to live in Turkey, a country that touches both Asia and Europe, with Muslim roots. There were people there who did not have access to hot water for a bath, shortages that kept them from being able to use their gas stoves. They actually had a huge population of people who had to dig through garbage to find anything that they could sell or eat. Dirty diapers did not detour them from digging through American trash cans! And we grumble!
All grumbling does is multiply and share our misery! It sucks the energy right out of the room! I have known people who grumble so much that they could make your dream vacation seem like a cancer diagnosis! Dwelling on whatever is bothering them makes them feel worse, and it certainly won’t help you.
When non-Christians see us grumble it makes the Christian life seem miserable, why would anyone want to be a Christian like you, if you are constantly grumbling?
Instead of grumbling try being grateful for what you do have, praying, and asking your pastor and other church members for advice and prayer. Looking for solutions will bring more satisfaction than grumbling ever will, and will make you a better witness for Christ.
The link below is to my affiliate Amazon.com A purchase through this link will help support Smart Christian,net. I recommend this book to anyone struggling with depression or purpose.
1. Telling people “I’ll pray for you” without actually praying for them. Guilty as charged. I can’t think of anybody who hasn’t done this at one time or another. And while most of us don’t actually mean to forget, it’s probably best that we just set aside time on the spot to pray for people. Are we really so busy that we can’t stop and pray for someone’s needs? We need to make sure we are fulfilling our duties as Christians and actually follow through with them. One prayer could be the tipping point to someone coming to know the love of God. Don’t miss the opportunity to speak life into someone because you don’t think you have time.
Source: If You Are a Christian, Please Stop Doing These 5 Things
When someone ask you to pray for them it is handy to have a notebook ready. Write down their name, just their first name will do if they want to remain anonymous, and the reason they want prayer to make sure that you don’t forget.
I also have had business cards that have my contact info, and my website address on them. That way they can contact you with questions about your faith, or to give you an update on their prayer request.
To Witness Like Jesus, Use Logic and Reason
Christians will many times hear atheists make the claim that faith is somehow opposed to reason. Most people of faith that I talk with reject that idea. They don’t believe that one must choose either faith or reason. However, there are quite a few Christians who think that faith and reason are separate realms that may coexist, but they don’t touch. For some Christians, think this idea is comforting. They have taken certain slogans of “bumper-sticker” Christianity such as “Jesus is all I need” and think that such a position is powerful enough to ward off objections. Worse, they think that the same approach works with evangelism.
via To Witness Like Jesus, Use Logic and Reason | Come Reason’s Apologetics Notes.
One of my goals this year is to become happier. I know that happiness isn’t the end all be all that some people make it out to be, but it sure would be nice to wear a smile more often.
Grouchy, miserable people make lousy witnesses. If your life doesn’t have enough smiles in it, give the link below a try.
10 Ways of Having a Happy Life – WomenKingdom.
Compassion will cure more sins than condemnation.
I have often written about judgement sometimes being necessary, but it is something that we must be very careful with. You can judge someone without being mean. When we judge, we must not lose sight of the fact that we are sinners too! I am made ill by the nasty comments I often see by people claiming to be Christian.
I recently heard a story on the show “Gutsy Christianity” about a man who created a questionable piece of art. Christians from all over the area were protesting, send him death threats and one even came to the place it was being displayed with a tire iron and busted up the glass that protected the piece and ripped it up. Meantime a brand new Christian pastor was being pressured to make some comments about the “art”. Instead of flying off the handle he wrote a polite note to the artist asking him to interpret the piece for him.
It turned out that the piece wasn’t about Christianity in general, it was a statement on the sex scandle of the Catholic Church. This pastor and artist became friends. The pastor asked the artist if he would create another piece depicting a more respected Jesus for this pastor’s church, and in the process of describing Jesus for the author he also shared the Gospel with the man. This artist hasn’t yet given his life to Christ, but he did present the Church with an awesome piece of art. Because of the kindness this pastor showed this man his outlook on Christianity is a lot more friendly then it was before, and multiple artist in his community are now Christians.
Hate chases people away from Christ. This man wanted nothing to do with a Christ that would endorse the kind of hate that was being aimed at him, by people claiming to be Christ representatives. But when faced with the Christ of compassion he became more compassionate, and so did many others.
Jesus isn’t just the God of love, he is the God of judgement as well. When we interact with the world we must do our best to be like him.
Judging when necessary, but NEVER overlook compassion.
“Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one–the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts,…Your affectionate uncle, Screwtape.”
— C.S. Lewis (The Screwtape Letters )
Drug addicts don’t wake up one morning and suddenly decide that they will become so addicted to drugs that they will throw away everything to get another high. They usually start out with “just this one time”. Then the addict changes to “just one more time” and the unfortunate keep adding just one more time it till they are willing to do unthinkable things just to get the next high.
Many sins start out really small, committing sins that can easily be rationalized away by most. I am sure many affairs have started out “I am just thinking about my hot secretary, it isn’t like I am touching her, and my wife will never find out.” I am not saying that every small sinful thought will turn into a life shattering event, but it can. We all commit these “little” sins from time to time. We can’t help it. It is human nature, but the closer we draw to God the chances of this happening gets smaller. In an age where our culture is calling good things bad, and bad things good focusing on God, Family, and the duties of the church are increasingly important. They will help you avoid the safest road to hell.
Note: by hell I am not just referring to the place where sinners experience judgement, but an earthly hell that we experience when our life falls to pieces.
Does Religion Cause War?
The charge that most of the wars in history were religiously motivated is a popular one, especially with the New Atheists and their followers. Sam Harris has written in his book The End of Faith that religion is “the most prolific source of violence in our history.”1 But a cursory review of the wars fought throughout history shows the opposite is true.
As Robin Schumacher reports “An interesting source of truth on the matter is Philip and Axelrod’s three-volume Encyclopedia of Wars, which chronicles some 1,763 wars that have been waged over the course of human history. Of those wars, the authors categorize 123 as being religious in nature, which is an astonishingly low 6.98% of all wars. However, when one subtracts out those waged in the name of Islam (66), the percentage is cut by more than half to 3.23%.”2
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