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Saturday
Apr072018

It is Easier to Complain than it is to Change

I am aware that many times this blog sounds like I am complaining, and to some degree I am. I admit it. I don’t mean to be negative and only accent our short- comings, but I simply ask the question what is missing today? For me what is missing is an honest dialogue about our spiritual lives. I write what I do because I am not hearing Christian communication punching through all the rhetoric surrounding a Christianity that is more about our culture than the Bible. 

Again, that may sound judgmental to you, but if you have been reading the Bible for some time you realize that what you read is not always kind or nice, and it doesn’t fit perfectly into a beautiful box with a bow on it. The prophets were not winning any awards for being politically correct or being Minnesota nice. Their message was clear, concise and messy as they gave a warning to people to change their direction. When people are leaning in the wrong direction away from God, He will always warn or speak before He acts. Warning is not as negative as some might think but more of a loving act that cares about the end result of life. 

As my title suggests, it is always easier to complain than it is to change. Most of us probably are in the complaining camp, because it is easier to assess a problem than it is to solve it. Yet, as Christians, our job is to point to the solution of problems and invite God into lives, first to address our need for Him, and then ask Him to look at the mess we are facing. 

Healing evangelist Smith Wigglesworth describes a condition many believers find themselves in as they struggle to keep their faith in God alive: 

“The reason the world is not seeing Jesus is that Christian people are not filled with Jesus. They are satisfied with attending meetings weekly, reading the Bible occasionally, and praying sometimes. It is an awful thing for me to see people who profess to be Christians lifeless, powerless, and in a place where their lives are so parallel to unbelievers’ lives that it is difficult to tell which place they are in, whether in the flesh or in the spirit.”  

Is Wigglesworth complaining or making an observation? To me this is a diagnosis of a spiritual condition that needs to be corrected. Jesus made this kind of statement all the time:

Matthew 23:25-28 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.26 Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.

27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.”

His observation about having the wrong motives in serving God was clearly about the misuse of saying one thing and doing something completely different. 

The Bible tells us to examine ourselves, come to an honest moment of truth, and stop spinning our words about how great God is. He doesn’t care so much about us telling him how great He is, He would rather have us live out His greatness through our lives, and then and onlythen will it affirm the greatness of God. 

Remember God told ancient Israel He was tired of the sacrifices and the words of their lips, which meant nothing:

Matthew 15:8 “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”

Isaiah 1:10-12 “Hear the word of the LORD, You rulers of Sodom; Give ear to the instruction of our God, You people of Gomorrah. 11"What are your multiplied sacrifices to Me?" Says the LORD. "I have had enough of burnt offerings of ramsand the fat of fed cattle; And I take no pleasurein the blood of bulls, lambs or goats. 12"When you come to appear before Me, who requires of you this trampling of My courts?

Now you might say I am complaining again, but I am not. I am only using God’s Word to remind all of us that it is a lot easier to be religious than it is to come to Jesus, deny yourself, pick up the cross, and follow Him. 

One of the great needs today is finding a quiet place where you invite Jesus to come and change you. What part of your life have you surrendered to complaining, being religious, or worshipping your opinions?  It may be a daily exercise for the balance of this year to simply pray: “Jesus change my heart, teach me your ways O God, and lead me to live out your Word.”

Now that prayer just might make a difference in your life, which in turn may even change the world around you. 

Keeping it honest and truthful….K

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