Wednesday, January 28, 2015

My Christian Can Beat Up Your Christian - Part 2

In discussing Christian Arrogance, I will follow an acrostic on the word P.R.I.D.E.  Seems appropriate... right?  

The P in our acrostic is for POSITION or placement; meaning, WHERE we place ourselves as compared to others on a scale between un-holy, doomed to hell all the way up to God's right-hand man.  

In my 40+ years as a Christian I have come across many--far TOO many--fellow believers who seem to believe that, because they are a Christian, they are "just a little bit better" than everyone else around them.  It is almost as if they are thinking, "Neener, Neener - I'm going to heaven, because I'm good - and you're going to hell, because you're bad!" I honestly feel that the main reason we ever feel like this often has to do with wrong teachings from some in our Christian culture.  Somewhere along the line we mixed up the notion of "chosen by God" with "chosen for abilities" or some other crazy notion.

Sadly, this attitude rises to the surface in ways that cause the non-believers around us to sniff out our arrogance and run for the hills.  I don't think we have intentionally attempted to make others feel less worthy or less valuable, but it does happen.  Yes,we are loved by God.  But that does not mean we are BETTER than anyone around us.  And for those who are agreeing with this statement, don't be so smug - you do it, too!  And, so do I.  Though I am trying to be less this way the older I get.

How did Jesus deal with His "Position?" 

Think about this - - no, really, think about this.

Jesus - was (is) THE Son of God; He IS God - in the flesh.  Jesus was - God in a human body - interacting with His very own creation.  That is mind-boggling!  

And, yet, even with His DNA, Jesus remained a SERVANT to everyone around Him.  He placed himself at the bottom, in other words.  Never was it, "Hey, look what I can do!"  (And He could do a lot!)  It was always, "Hey, look what I can do - for YOU!"  

Are we like that?  No, really, are we?  

Probably. Sometimes. At church. In front of the pastor. 

What about at Walmart? Or the gas station? Or when we pass a homeless man in smelly clothes who has a sign asking for money?  

I encourage you (and me) to re-think what our POSITION actually is, as follows of Jesus Christ. Don't allow yourself to become too arrogant in your mistaken "lofty" placement in the Kingdom. Absolutely believe, and live, as a child of the King!  But never forget that THIS King wears a crown of thorns - not diamonds. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

My Christian Can Beat Up Your Christian! - Part 1

It is almost humorous to be writing about this topic, because when a person sits down to pen an article or blog or book, it infers that person is an expert on the topic being discussed. And since the topic of this 7-part series is "Christian Arrogance," it feels somewhat ironic to me.

The truth is, I am not an expert on this topic. Merely an observer.

I have been a Christian for over 45 years and, in that time, I have seen the good, the bad, and, unfortunately, the ugly. The past several decades have been some of the most spirit-filled and exciting we have known as Christians. There has also been a growing seed of arrogance that has permeated many areas of our faith.

This series of blog posts, then, should be viewed as a type of "call to action" or "warning." I won't go so far as to say they are prophetic because when a person talks like that, the rest of the Christian community gets nervous. Some even paint signs and host rallies.

We will just agree that I have observed this Christian Arrogance in many ways and forms - even in my own life - and, therefore, feel the urgency to speak on it so that we who call ourselves believers can help those around us find the simplicity of Jesus in the chaos of religion.

The series is built on an acrostic on the word, "PRIDE."  The next article (Part 2) will speak on the "P" in that acrostic: POSITION - how we are prideful because of how we position ourselves in the Kingdom.