Thursday, September 6, 2012
Let's just get along...
"Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers." -- Galatians 6:10
People have sometimes made fun of my "Can't we just get along?" attitude. I am just one who wants to get along with people. I guess it comes from being a "people pleaser" which is often times looked at as being a negative thing...always doing whatever it takes to make people happy, even if it means not doing the right thing for me. It makes me seem weak to some. Well...that may be so, but I would rather live like that than always at odds with everyone around me, trying to get my own way, doing whatever is best for me, me, me.
I know people who are so true to themselves that don't give a second thought to the feelings of others with what they say or do. They walk all over people, not caring at all about the ramifications of their actions. And then they wonder why people don't like them, or why nothing ever seems to go their way....giving them more motivation to gripe, grumble and growl about their circumstances.
I see there has to be a balance between the two attitudes. You can care about others AND learn to set boundaries so you remain true to yourself at the same time. That is what I am striving to do in my life. I want to do good for others, but at the same time not overlook my needs. wants and desires as well.
To work on this area of my life, I try to live by the "golden rule" and rely on God to lead me. Yes, I do read the Bible, but I always pray that God will help me interpret what He says in his word the way he meant it. I have seen over and over that you can make the Bible say whatever you want it to. You can take things out of context, twist and turn the words to make them seem to support any way of thinking.
Take the Galatians verse above. First it says we are to do good to all people. Then it goes on to say especially to those who belong to the family of believers. I have seen evidence of Christians who interpret that to mean that they are only to do good to other Christians and have the right to hate and mistreat anyone who doesn't believe the same as they do. They leave out a few words...like ALL. Let us do good to ALL people. And, catch the other important word...oppportunity. We have the opportunity to do good to those who believe differently than we do every day of our lives. It's an opportunity because when we do good for others outside of our own faith, we are demonstrating God's love. God doesn't just love the Christians! He loves ALL people. He wants all his creations to believe in him and love him. We have the opportunity to show them that love!
So, in this season of mud slinging, slander, and political mumbo-jumbo...let's remember that we are to do good to ALL people, even the people on the other side of the fence. You have the right to believe and support any candidate you want and vote whichever way you choose...but lets stop all the negativity and name calling and hateful talk. What good does it do? Do you think you are going to sway someone's opinion by posting a negative anti-whoever statua on Facebook? I don't think so.
Let's just agree to disagree and vote whichever way we want, and try to do something NICE for the person who believes differently than you do. There are Christians on BOTH sides of the political race, so if we are to do good, especially for believers, you have God's instruction right there! Can't we all just get along?