Becoming Stronger Christians: Introspecting Introspection... Inside
There are many strange things in this world that we are faced with. I know for me, everyday I'm faced with something really... REALLY strange. There is one strange thing though that deeply bothers me. Almost everywhere I go, I hear fellow Christians talk about another fellow Christian and WHY those Christians SHOULD NOT be Christians... this is strange on so many levels. The strangest part for me is not that I hear it, but that the #1 place I hear this said is not outside the church... but in it. This always sadness me. Almost every time I hear this being said, a scary question pops in my head... This question haunts me.
....Are Christians making others afraid to become Christians?
When I answer this thought... I realize, that the sad but scary truth is... yes we are. And what's even more sad?
I've been the problem before...
Think of it like this: Someone is thinking about investing in your company which you are telling him, is under AMAZING leadership. However, while you are saying this to him, he overhears other employees talking horribly about the boss's qualifications and skills. Do you think that person will invest in your company or go somewhere else? Well I don't know about you, but I would go somewhere else! This is a perfect example of the effect of hypocrisy! It's enough to make your head hurt... I know, but in order to correct something, we MUST try to find the source of the problem.
Isn't our job as Christians to Love ALL and bring ALL closer to the Lord?
If Christianity is about what we do right/how perfect we are while telling how filthy others are, then we CAN NOT call ourselves followers of God! True followers of God will know that ALL are born with sin (including us), THUS making US no different then "THEM". As Psalm 51:5 states... "Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me." So why do most Christians STILL don't understand this after 2000 years? 1 Corinthians 15:33 warns, "Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.” So is it possible that even fellow Christians can corrupt us? Is Paul warning about corruption being spread not only outside of the church, but in it? If we look at the definition of the word corrupt, then maybe we can try to find out...
Corrupt- To change from good to bad in morals, manners, or actions
... Unfortunately, sometimes people in the church can do this to us... and soon we do this others outside the church. This corruption of true Christianity creates hypocrisy and the world sees this! This hypocrisy fuels Atheism... and it is sad that a chunk of this hypocrisy... comes from Christians.
Though we may see a sin in someone else, we often fail to see the same sin in ourselves. As long as we compared ourselves to others, we think we're pretty good. But when we come into the presence of His perfection, that's a different story.
Paul goes in detail in Romans, "You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. You who boast in the law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law? As it is written, the world hates God because of you." (Romans 2:1, 23, 24)
By labeling, distancing, and being forceful, and by practicing hypocrisy... We are accomplishing this which Paul wrote about.
We as Christians are suppose to be leaders. A leader MUST build up and not break down! Salvation boils down to our personal relationship with Jesus Christ, not what church we attend... not what denomination... not what we have DONE... what we struggle with... what bible we use... where we are from, etc. ALL THAT MATTERS is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ! This is the true beauty of Christianity! So because it boils down to a choice to have a relationship... we can't simply MAKE someone have one... THEY must want one... and why would others want one if even us, the Christians, don't even practice what we preach so well at?
We as Christians not only have an obligation to help other Christians stay on track, but we have a DUTY to the Lord. It's time to get real with ourselves... It's time to truly change, from the inside out... We must repent when we make a mockery out of the Lord. When we do repent? The Lord PROMISES he will forgive us and wash us white as snow! We truly have an awesome... awesome God.
So on this beautiful day, let's focus LESS on others and MORE on ourselves. Lets have a day of introspection. Let's take this moment to ask ourselves, "Who is Jesus to me... and honestly, do others see that through me?" We as Christians must not only talk the walk... but we must walk the talk. "Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place." -Revelation 2:5