I see it happen all around me. Who am I kidding? I see it happen within me. A new book, movie, TV show, lyrics to a popular song, slang… you name it. Something comes on the scene and the church gets up in arms about it.
“How dare they trivialize abortion in that song!”
Whatever the case, you soon see Facebook statuses flow with disgust for the latest assault on Christian values. Heck, we get sick of assaults on common decency! Message board posts abound with titles like, “Have you seen/heard this thing?” The threads, emails, statuses, and tweets all decry the attack on purity, marriage, parents’ rights, with things like infidelity, profanity, or “children’s rights” (you know, the rights to behave in any way that is legal or not and make the parents responsible for it but limit their ability to limit the behavior!). Look, I agree with those things. I don’t like them any more than the next person, and frankly, I’m just as likely to pick up the banner cry and carry it myself. I’m not about to lower the boom on anyone else here before I get cracked over the head first, but yes there is a huge pregnant “but” coming.
Why are we so quick to rant and rail ant the world behaving like the lost, Christ-needing people they are instead of quick to rant against our own problems? Why are we willing to gossip about ugly TV shows instead of attacking the ugly gossip in our own hearts? Why are we willing to fight against pornography when we aren’t willing to fight our own lusts? Why are we so quick to denounce foul language and sensuality on the big screen but ignore the foul things we think and say about others. Slander? It’s forbidden too, folks!
I know we want to clean up the world in which we live. We’re sick of getting splashed on by tires throwing the muck of it against us. We want to take the world for Christ! PRAISE THE LORD! Let’s do it! But um, didn’t Jesus say something about dealing with the planks in our own eyes before we start trying to dig out the specks in others’?
Am I the only one who wonders what the effect would be if Christians were “…Christians, Christians only
Serving Jesus, our only plea
If we’d all give up to the precious Son…” (Keith Lancaster)
I just can’t help but wonder what would happen if we stopped pointing accusing fingers at the world, shocked at the lostness of it all, and started pointing it inward at ourselves, shocked at our own sinfulness–eager to change ourselves.