Even with best intentions of writing more frequently, it sometimes still just does not happen. The alarm still goes off at 4:10am every morning and there are still 24 hours in a day, but alas, writing for any length of time in this season of life may just have to (as I totally overuse in texts) hold please.
Below is a devotional I submitted as part of the church’s devotional writing team. I love the brevity of the devotions, and I especially love the varying viewpoints of the many people who write them. It’s always interesting to me when people read the exact same words on a page and yet have very different interpretations in meaning. Very different conclusions are frequently landed upon, again, from the same words.
Clearly, we know this. There would be no need for “Biblical Interpretation” classes otherwise. Misuse and mis-molding of Scripture happens all the time, but it never ceases to amaze me how often people throw it around nonetheless in an effort to make their point.
This is usually, if not always, done only out of selfishness – not in the spirit of Christ or any other good thing. I have yet to be on the receiving end of any sentence that starts out “Well you’re a good Christian! You ought to…blah blah blah” and the person spewing those words actually had both best intentions and my best interest in mind. No. It’s always been done to satisfy their own agenda. I suppose sugar coating whatever message the spewer is trying to deliver with “Scripture says!” makes it taste better.
I mean honestly, have you ever been approached by someone who truly loves and accepts you for who you are that starts a sentence like that? Would another “good Christian” begin a conversation with “Well you know what the Bible says about this!” when all they wanted was to help you with your own Christian walk? I don’t think so. It’s like the world’s most giant red flag ever – Neil and Buzz might as well have plunked one down on the moon when they visited so that would be the reflection we saw instead of the thinly-veiled one.
For brevity’s sake, let me condense how it usually goes:
“You know what Scripture says!” [In fact, let me quote it out of context for you right now!] “I can’t believe you call yourself a Christian but you…
Don’t give me what I want.
That’s really the end of the sentence. Pronouncing someone’s Christianity does not help the person on the receiving end of it; in fact, it only shows the exact antithesis of what Christianity is about: selflessness.
God is our Father and the best parental model that has ever been or ever will be. Could you imagine God starting a sentence like that, or responding to us in that manner?
Yeah. I can’t imagine it either. Because it’s not Scriptural.
It’s not the narrative. And it’s not the way any loving parent, any good Christian, or any human being should behave. I pray for all the people who have had a messed up view of God over the years because they were only able to see God through the lens of their own parents. And I pray that people who have had to endure bad parental behavior will not find their self-worth and value in what their earthly parents think or say or do, but only in how God truly sees them: a beloved child whom He created and loves unconditionally.
P.S. The devotional is NOT below! It will be in the next post, since it seems I got a bit carried away with my words. And the usual non-brevity.