Embracing the tension...

>> Monday, July 12, 2010

Tension.

We can try to avoid it...
but there it is, a permanent reality among us until His Kingdom comes.

I am trying to figure out how to feel and think what I do without it getting in the way of loving people. That is tricky, to say the least.

Inwardly, I am conservative, but this doesn't hold a lot of weight because of what I look like. Outwardly, my appearance keeps me from being able to serve or speak in a lot of churches.

There is a tension there.

I have found that it doesn't always matter if my heart is in the right place. Some people just can't see beyond my skin. I can either be bitter and unloving towards these people, or I can choose to accept the fact that we aren't going to resolve this easily...so I embrace this tension.

I see public disagreements between prominent Christian people splattered all over the Internet. Pick a topic, I am sure we are divided on it (and blogging, facebooking or tweeting about it).

Do we spend all of our time trying to prove everybody who doesn't agree with us on all points wrong, or do we love them anyway? What about prayer? What ever happened to Believers praying for one another?

I am not suggesting that we don't confront sin, but there is a difference between calling one another out in love and mockery.

Can we please just embrace this tension already? Until we are fully restored, it's here to stay, people.

Is it okay to publicly make fun of self-proclaimed Christ-followers whose methods of evangelism we disagree with?

What are constructive ways we can deal with tension in the Body?

2 comments:

OneBigHappy July 12, 2010 at 11:46 AM  

Here's what I think. And I don't intend to be preachy with this. It's just what I have developed in order to try to think with a transformed mind: Jesus said that "out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks." I have tried to change my behavior in the past, when what really needed to change was my heart. I have resigned myself to heart change, with the belief that the behaviors and the words that come out of my life will be a result of what is going on in my heart. If sarcasm or arrogance or ridicule are coming out of me, it's because these things have not been defeated in my heart. I can't get into someone else's heart and do this for them. I can't even really do it for myself. It is only as I submit and respond to the Gospel on a daily basis that this change comes about through the work of the Holy Spirit within me, in Christ. So, to answer the question, I think the best way to deal with the tension is to live the Gospel. As far as it's up to you, be at peace with everyone (Romans 12:18). Speak only what's useful for building other up according to their need (Ephesians 4:29). And remember that the anger of human beings is useless for bringing about the righteous life that God desires (James 1:19-21).

Zombie July 12, 2010 at 3:07 PM  

Good blog. I get that same stuff with some other Christians. I have found though that even when they judge me initially, if I ignore it for a while and really try to be myself and set an example, they end up looking at things differently.

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