Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Old Way Has To Go

It's been a while since I posted a blog up here and I have been thinking that  I need to start posting again.  Today I want to talk about something that some may not like to read.  I know I don't.

I remember growing up that peer-pressure was always a major issue.  If I wanted to do something that mom or dad didn't want me to do, there was always the old "But everyone else is doing it..." when in fact, maybe only a few were.  Of course, the parents famous reply that I'm sure you have all either heard or used as the reply is in the Parenting 101 handbook...

"If everybody else jumped off a bridge, would you?"

But now, as adults, we still have to deal with it.  Adam and Eve dealt with it as well.  The pressure to go along with the crowd and accept things that you know deep down inside are wrong.  This isn't a blog to discuss what those things are.  If certain things come to your mind while reading this, then perhaps you need to ask yourself, "is this what I truly believe, or is this what I feel is right to believe because everybody else wants me to believe it and I want to fit in and not be cast aside."

The problem with going along with the crowd is, they are empty-headed.  Mindless if you will. They have lost touch with God and ultimately, with reality. They don't think straight any longer.  The crown feels no pain and is addicted to every kind of perversion imaginable.

It's not how we as Christians are supposed to live.  We are not to go along with the crowd.  What we believe is right should be completely opposite of what the world believes is right. If we are paying close attention to Christ, we should be well instructed in these things.  We do not have the excuse of ignorance. Everything we once believed, everything we once were connected with has to go.  It's like rotten apples.  Holding on to even one small part of it will corrupt the rest of the bunch.  As Christians, we are to live a life renewed, reflecting God's very character in everything we do and say.

What does this mean?  In part, no more lies. No more false pretense. Tell the truth.  Always.  We are all connected as part of Christ's body.  When we lie to someone else, we end up lying to ourselves as well.

Does this mean we can't be angry any more?  No.  Go ahead.  Be angry. We can sometimes do well to be angry...as long as we don't use that anger as fuel for revenge.  Christ got angry with what was going on in the Temple.  Don't stay angry.  That's not good.  Never go to bed angry.  It's been said, don't let the sun set on your anger.  This only gives the Devil a foothold in our lives.

Sometimes, we might try to justify things like stealing as well. In this economy, it's harder to come by the things we desire or even need.  This doesn't mean it's ever ok to steal.  We need to work honest jobs to not only earn our own way, but perhaps help those who are in need as well.

And now for a biggie...we must watch the way we talk.  It's so easy to allow foul or dirty things to come from our mouths.  You may have heard or even participated in many arguments on what is foul and what is dirty.  This post isn't to define what those things are, but it's safe to assume that if you wouldn't be comfortable saying it around your parents, your children or your pastor, it's not likely something you should say. Say only what helps. Treat each word as if it were a gift from God Himself.  You know why?  Because they are.

Don't break God's heart. His Holy Spirit is moving and breathing in us.  It is the most intimate part of our lives, making us fit for Him.  We must never take this for granted.

We need to make clean break from our old lives and the old ways we used to talk.  The cutting, backstabbing and profane things we are tempted to say need to go away.  We need to be gentle to each other.  Kind.  Sensitive. Forgiving each other without question because God in Christ has forgiven us.

Read Ephesians 4 17 - 32.  Everything I said comes directly from that passage and is paraphrased in my own words.