It seems as if most Christians are always trying to correct someone. This morning, I am just going to share my thoughts and feelings on the matter. Take what you will from it.
Like myself, many people do not like to be told what they should do. We have to remember: we are not the other person. We have not seen through their eyes, been where they have been, developed and processed the life they have experienced, and so on. Yes, I get the fact that Christians are called to show His Word to the world while correcting, rebuking and encouraging fellow believers, but the way these things are executed is a huge problem. I get a full example within the community of bloggers, as well as the organized church.
Authority. I sometimes wonder what the word means to the believer?
It often seems as though the very nature of the word is abused within the Christian body. Intermingling with the many different emotions, feelings, inadequacies and adequacies that make up an individual delivering a correction, as well as the inevitable need to be heard — all contribute to the way correction is delivered. Many times, one’s delivery becomes a subtle abuse not seen or realized.
I see a lot of that subtle abuse.
I had a brief discussion with a Catholic over their choice of placing the Pope before the high priesthood of Jesus (which didn’t go over well), and, just like a few experiences I’ve had before, authority was the bottom line. He gave me the classic, “…built His Church upon Peter” spiel. So, the Pope is of an AUTHORITY! I won’t get into this discussion, so please move on with me. Just like the blinded Catholic, the Protestant groups are no different. Authority is thrown about — the divisions within the Protestant church are immense…
..and every one of them is correct?
A self-proclaiming authority within itself, I would say.
Then the “divided truth” begins to go to the head of the member. Throw in the Bible they are supposed to use within their church, and get even more authoritative division.
I’ve been, what I consider, to be a follower of Christ for several years. In my eyes, many “Christians” are giving Jesus a bad rap, as well as a bad rep. They take their human authority and correct the world with their abusive ways and use Scripture to back up (many times, within error) their view of the way others should be walking. If some want to be knocked around by abuse, so be it. But, here is what I know:
God sent Holy Spirit for all who believe to guide them into His truth!!
If you are feeling abused, or if you feel ridiculed, or if you are corrected and fail to see if you really are being corrected by failing to know His Word and His Holy Spirit, then reach out to Him. A relationship with the living God in you should be producing the fruits of the Spirit: Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control. Sure, I need work, but I do the best I can. To hear, see, experience and read between the lines as I observe the abusive men of God throwing their weight around not only makes me the opposite of the fruits of His Spirit, it makes me just like the men delivering the message.
I sincerely pray this morning that all are led by the authority of Christ in them, and not by the men of them.