#1 - WE ARE YOUR WORST CRITICS
#1 - We like to point fingers in judgment
If you don't agree with us, you better run for cover.
If you don't live the life we think you should, look out.
When I was a young Christian lad, I was one of those people who was self-righteous, "holier than thou", judgmental. Whatever it is we want to call it, I was that guy. I always looked down my nose at others who weren't living their lives as good as I was. This was especially true of other Christians. Rather than personally helping a weaker brother or sister in Christ, I made sure to point out to them how weak they were.
I was this way for much of my young-adult life, too. That is, until I started my career in 1998. When I was a young cop, I drifted away from Christ for about 3 years. I was a "player" and a drinker. I chased women like a kid in a candy store, and I drank to get drunk. Suddenly, the people who were once my cohorts in judgment, were now my judges. I had the fingers pointed at me, suggesting how terrible I was.
I always sensed the Spirit of God gently nudging/pulling me back to Himself, convicting me of my sin, but never condemning me. His saints took care of that part for Him. (I say that tongue-in-cheek). One night, I prayed kneeling beside my bed, saying, "God, if I'm going to come back to you, I don't want to be "that guy" any longer. I don't like the fingers pointed at me. I don't want to do the same to others who may be weaker.
Today, I find it difficult to judge another man/woman for their life choices. Sure, I may not agree with them, but you know what? I've done some pretty sickening things in my life. I have no room to talk, the way I see it. I have no right to point fingers. When I grow judgmental, I get punched in the face for breaking my vow. I quickly have to repent.
Sadly, too many of us Christians are "that guy". We love pointing fingers and making people feel worse about themselves and their situation than they already do. The topics are endless: Divorce, Abortion, Alcohol, Tobacco use, Porn, Fatness, Foul language, etc.
But guess what. I have a secret. Shhhhhhhhhh. Don't tell anybody. I know Christians who have done alllllllllll of those things, and then some.
We are hypocrites in the worst way. (Yeah, yeah, I know...the entire world is full of hypocrites in every walk of life. But WE ought to set the example.) Yes, we agree, the church is full of hypocrites. A good many of us recognize our hypocrisy and we are working on eliminating it. But far too many of us put on a mask that we grabbed out of the closet, speak out of both sides of our mouths, and then deride others for their bad choices.
May God have mercy on us.