It's not about making a point…let's make a difference

Happy Christians versus Angry Christians

As a kid growing up in church, all I could remember was the hypocrisy of the adults I came in contact with. From the ‘God’s gonna get you for being a sinner attitude’ to blatant favoritism and legalism, I came to a point where I wanted nothing to do with church, it’s people or God. In my immature mind it was a package deal, they were all the same thing.

Thirty years latter I returned to the church and found this amazing thing called grace. Instead of the teachings of an angry God, I learned about the love of a savior who’s sacrifice bought my freedom. Not only His love, but that of a Father who wants only the best for His children. It was a far cry from the God of my youth.

The church still has significant issues. Some are better than others, but just like people they all have their good and bad points. If you are looking for a good church, make sure they teach the bible, not some man’s interpretation of it, and they demonstrate their love for each other and people in general.

Last thought…as you walk through life look at the example you set as a Christ follower through your actions and attitude and ask yourself this question. Would people want what I have, or would they run in the opposite direction as fast as they can?

Blessings

Happy Christians versus Angry Christians

TGIF Today God Is First NextGen
by Charis Hillman Brown

“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” -John 3:17

“The #1 barrier that keeps unbelievers from trusting Jesus is not the Good News but the sinful attitudes of believers.” – Rick Warren

Frequently I meet Christians who are caught up in the legalism of their beliefs. The stark contrast between right and wrong is their fuel. Grace in grey areas is difficult for them to grasp. For them, the pursuit of righteousness is so important that their religious views seem to overshadow the importance of building relationships. Religion has become their god.

How does this fit into the model of Christianity? We are called to love others, no matter how different or difficult they may seem. Jesus said this of a prostitute He once met: “Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven – as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” Luke 7:47 When we realize how much we’ve been forgiven, we love more, and are able to forgive more.

Christianity has a P.R. problem today. Many people outside of the Christian faith call us hypocritical, stern, and unloving – mainly a political action group. They see us as hostile and condemning, versus loving and full of joy.*

How are we ever going to change this perception? This is clearly a far cry from the life God has called us to. Jesus said they would know us by the love we have for one another – that includes non-believers too!

In order to change this, each of us needs to make a commitment to be open to God’s Spirit, at all times. Once we’re saved, the journey has not ended – it is just beginning. We need to be open to being continuously renewed – to becoming more like Jesus.

We need to grow the spiritual fruits of hope, faith, joy, graciousness, and love in our lives. (Gal 5:22, 23) By the evidence of these things in our lives that the world cannot explain, we will be known as “happy” Christians, versus “angry” Christians.

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