This was said to me a few weeks ago by a fellow believer. I purposely left the sentence that led up to this sentence and the noun that completed this sentence out. This way, you can guess how he completed his statement, “you are full of ____.” Don’t be afraid to stop and jot down a few possible ideas on what he might have said. Before you do so, let me remind you that I am a pastor, a worship leader and a Christian writer, maybe this will give you a clue as to the missing word.I pay my friend to be my friend.
I know that sounds weird so let me explain. I have been using a Christian councillor for a long time, so long that I call him my $140/hour friend. It has also been so long he might be questioning whether he is in the right vocation. I assure you that he is not only good at his job but he continues to be a very important part of God’s restorative work in my life.
We become what we believe.
The truth of this is undeniable. We will become a product of how we view the world around us and we will view the world around us through the lens of our beliefs.
A Christian world view will always differ from any other faith no matter how much people try to lump all religion together.
A Christian world view will always differ from Christ follower to Christ follower. Geography, family beliefs, denominational influence and personal experience along with a whole slew of other external stimuli help to shape how we view ourselves and the world we live in.
I don’t smoke, don’t chew, don’t go with girls that do.
For those of you who wonder about this work of poetic genius, it is an old saying that refers to the use of pipe, cigarette, cigar and chewing tobacco products. Its catchy, easy to remember phrasing was an attempt to place the vice of tobacco indulgence in a negative light.
Don’t get me wrong, using tobacco is not a good choice but with the adoption and adaptation of this phrase by the church, people started to believe that Christians were defined by their lack of tobacco use and the fact they don’t date people who do. Christian world view changed on tobacco from it being a bad choice to being a sinful rebellion against the Creator. This led to people becoming what they believed, haters of tobacco consumption and therefore against those who consumed it because it was considered sinful.
It doesn’t take much to make your belief a universal truth.
I do not believe that moral relativism is supposed to be a Christian practice but I do believe most of us practice it.
A compilation of our personal experiences backed by the ever present danger of the evil one who’s sole purpose is to interfere with the implementation of God’s will, leads us to make what we have come to believe into a truth that everyone must embrace.
This is moral relativism at its best or rather at its worst. Taking something we feel strongly about and creating a sin/not sin list of behaviours along with a forgivable/not forgivable list of outcomes.
From the public to the private.
Let’s forget about the more public beliefs the church has come to embrace and talk about what you believe about yourself.
What compilation of your personal experiences backed by the ever present danger of the evil one who’s sole purpose is to interfere with the implementation of God’s will, leads you to make what you have come to believe about yourself into a truth that everyone must embrace?
Do you feel you cannot be loved, forgiven or trusted? Do you give love but refuse to accept it? Do you forgive others but not yourself? Is God’s grace big enough for every sin but yours? Is God’s love unlimited until it comes to you?
You are full of ____.
Before I fill in the blank, I will start with the sentence before. My friend said, “excuse my language.” As you look at the list you made of possible nouns that my friend, councillor and fellow believer could have used to describe me did you have the word commonly used to refer to excrement?
He was right both in the use of that particular word and in the sentiment it conveyed. You may not like the use of this word; you may consider it sinful to incorporate four letter words into a Christian’s vocabulary (this could be something you feel strongly about and have created a sin/not sin list around) but it was the perfect word for me because it was true and because it was unforgettable.
I had become what I believed about me.
I stand in the pulpit and proclaim a God that is limitless in His love. I lead songs that talk about His grace and mercy. I write blogs that insist that God’s character is perfect and His promises impossible for Him not to fulfill. Somewhere along the line I began to believe that this was true for everyone but me; what a load of ____.
The compilation of my personal experiences backed by the ever present danger of the evil one who interfered with my acceptance of God’s love, grace and mercy, led me to make what I had come to believe about myself into a truth that everyone must embrace.
What has happened to you that when combined with the lies of Satan, has changed your belief about God’s love, grace and mercy, turning it into a non-biblical universal truth you hold about yourself?
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5 (NIV)