I always find it amusing when people who have no personal experience in a certain area, find themselves to be an expert on the topic. In my own life, those who have been the most vocal about my parenting decisions have never had children themselves. While it can be frustrating to feel as though I have to defend my position to someone who can’t really grasp my heart on the matter, I think it’s more embarrassing for the one who is so clearly exposing their ignorance.
Today I read a comment on a post that fired me up a bit. The statement was made that churches only want your money and a bunch of followers. Now, I am not certain if this person has experienced a church or not, but I have met plenty of people who hold to this mindset, despite their never having been an active member of a church body before.
I can’t speak for all churches, but I can certainly share my own personal experiences from over the years. I have encountered a wide variety of denominations, cultures, body sizes, worship and leadership styles, pastoral positions, etc. While they may not all have been a good fit for me or my family, each collective group of believers has brought something rich and meaningful to my personal experience (even those that I considered negative at the time). In the church I am now a member of, we are admonished to give as Christ calls us to. When we tithe we show God we trust Him with every aspect of our lives, we help keep our building functioning & in good repair (much like taking care of our own homes), and I know for a fact that our church gives away thousands of dollars to provide emergency shelter for those passing through, rent/utility money, food for needy families, school supplies for kids, wells in Cambodia, food & medical provision to children in Africa, and we send teams of people to help those in dire need in this country (including recent hurricanes). And I have absolutely been intentionally trained up to be a leader in the house of God in which I serve.
The saddest part about ignorance is its capacity to affect others in their own journey. Many of us can be swayed by the opinions of others, especially when we believe that information to be fact instead of seeking the truth for ourselves.
Negativity breeds negativity. What we seek, we tend to find. Choose to season your words with grace, temper your thoughts with acknowledgement that you yourself can be a fallible individual, and allow each of us to learn and grow without unnecessary hindrances. You could literally be keeping someone from their eternal destiny with your tainted expressions…