Sunday, July 20, 2008

Who Are The Christians?

That's a serious question.... WHO ARE THE CHRISTIANS?

Then next question do you represent?

If you were to tell no one of your belief in God the Eternal father, his only begotten son Jesus Christ and in the Holy Ghost, that holy spirit of promise, how would they know you represent?

Could people tell by the company you keep?
I used to hang around with some shady characters in some shady places. Although I may not have been doing shady things myself, no one would know. Sure no one should judge unrighteously, however, we are to make righteous judgements, that's called discernment.
Me sitting at a bar or with a buncha people cussing, swearing and the like is not a good representation of who I am or who I want to represent. It may be how some of my friends choose to represent themselves and there's nothing wrong with that. I simply choose to do it a different way.

Can people tell by the language I speak?
This is huge for me. I used to curse pretty bad and I had all these tactics to try and help. We had a cuss jar, where it cost me a buck to cuss. I then cost me a buck-fifty. When my brother was in the marines he was once told by his staff Sergent that I had a mouth as bad as any marine they had been around and that didn't even help.
What did help was this I read in one of the church magazines for the youth. The article was talking about bad language and said something to the effect of this:

The mouth we use, the tongue we speak with, it is the same mouth and tongue we pray with each morning and evening. It is the same mouth and tongue we praise our Lord with. It is the same lips we DARE ask for God to grant us comfort, peace and blessings. How can we dare use it for foul language.

It really struck me... how dare I use the same mouth to ask The Father for blessings to string obscenities and guile? I'm not saying I'm perfect in my speaking Those who know me know the story of me and the Scripture: Ephesians 4:29, 31-32. Elder Jeffery Holland spoke on such things in the April 2007 conference. I studied that talk all last year. I find myself needing to study it more. I want to represent in my speech.

Can you look at me and tell?
God's children comes in all shapes, sizes and colors. Amen! We most likely can't tell just by looking at people who they truly are and what they really believe. None of us have a sign on our forehead like an ingredient label of our contents and what's inside of us.
Are you supposed to be able to tell by my packaging? I'm not sure, I'm really not. I do know this.
Do we represent who we are in a modest, respectful, clean manor? Or are we the representation of the hottest hip hop song talking 'bout thuggin, saggin, droppin it like it's hot and shakin it like a salt shaker?
I don't want to represent with booty shorts on and half of my rear end hanging out of my clothes. Nor do I want to represent with my cleavage overly exposed and clothes so tight, short or scanty that the world knows my body as well as I do. I don't mind being modest. I appreciate my daughter sharing those same attitudes she always was a pretty modest kid. Not all compliments are respectful and uplifting and most times it intention is how we choose to present ourselves. I'd rather present myself to the world as a woman of God. And reserve showing my body for my husband at appropriate times in appropriate places.

Can you tell by what I'm listening too? Music has always been a big thing for me in terms of what is blaring out of my speakers. I've never really cared too much for song with questionable lyrics. No I don't listen to gospel or christian music all the time 24/7. But I'm very careful about the songs I do listen to especially lately. I used to rationalize in my teenage years "I'm just listening to the music and not paying attention to the words." And I used to believe that.
One day I found myself singing "sexual healing" on the way to church. Don't get me wrong... I LOVED that song, I still do. However sometimes that song pops in my head at the most inopportune times. It reminds me of when my daughter was about a year and half, singing bohemian rhapsody in church. Hilarious!
We can all say to some degree "They don't make music like they used to" and we would all agree. Can I just say, I'm sick of the lyrics with all the sexual innuendos, disrespect of women and their bodies, pimps, hoes, and such. Exactly who/what does such music represent? And who are we to promote it?
There's plenty of great music out there without all that other mess. I've several friends who have what they call "Sunday music." Radio music is not Sunday music according to them. My mom used to say if you can't listen to it on Sunday, you prolly shouldn't be listening to it. It was her way of saying be careful what you're listening too, you are the same person Monday -Saturday that you are on Sunday. Basically choose music that is uplifting and joyful... not particularly only religious, although that's good other days as well.

Can you tell by the media I support?
Can someone give me a good reason as to why I should support movies with foul language, violence, sexual content and so on? Just like music, there's plenty of good shows/movies out there that don't focus on these kinds of things. I really don't enjoy them or how they make me feel. I remember going to the movies to see Harlem nights. I laughed my butt off in that movie. And when I thought back on the movie was feeling that if they took out all the swearing, it wouldn't have been as funny. And I sort of felt like I needed to adjust my attitudes and lifestyles to more uplifting and wholesome entertainment.

Article of Faith # 13:
13 W believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.

Can you tell by my actions?
The world is familiar with "What would Jesus Do?" WWJD?
If everyone followed WWJD? Then we could all follow up with DJWW. That's right Devil Just Won't Win.
I learned early on how to serve others. I love doing it. Random Act of Kindness. Anonymous acts of Kindness. Even stupid things that people wouldn't even notice really.... like taking the shopping carts into their stall instead of leaving it in my parking spot. I like being kind. I like helping others to a point.
I detest selfishness and self serving people. People who always expect to get and never really give of themselves.
Matthew 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren ye have done it unto me.
Do our actions represent who we are and what we stand for?

I'm having issues with what to believe or trust. If people aren't consistent in word and deed Do we trust what people say or do we trust what they do? It is not enough to say we believe in God and are followers of Jesus Christ. Our words and actions must reflect it as well. It is not enough to say we believe in God and are followers of Jesus Christ. Our words and actions must reflect it as well.

Do we even follow the basics?

When moses came down from the mountains and found his people dancing and worshipping false idols he broke the stone tablets. He went back up the mountain and came back with the basic 10 commandments we can't even keep today.

Something as simple as using the Lord's name in vain. To me, something as simple as "OH MY G--" would be taking the Lord's name in vain. It's not cussing or blasphemy but is there a need for us to use the Lord's name so casually and out side of praise or prayer? Meh, not really.

Even something as simply as keeping the Sabbath Holy. That means 100 different things to 100 different people. For 6 days we labor in the fields or at our jobs taking care of our the needs for ourselves, our body our atmosphere. The Lord asks for 1 day a week that we worship and remember him. One day of 6. He ask that we not work nor cause anyone else to work when possible. It should be a day to rest from our weekly physical labors and to feed our spirit, study our scriptures visit families or those who could use uplifting of the spirit. Most of the time we can't even do that.

Sum it up in Modern Terms:

Does your face book or myspace page represent you as a christian?

I had to throw that in. I've been sought out by a lot of folks on these things who start off by telling me they're a good christian man looking for a good christian woman. Then I look at their profile and see NOTHING that would support their claims. Every once in a while they might quote some scripture or mention a belief in God or the creator and then quote the philosophies of man mingles with scripture to make is sound good. I'm finding a lot of Closet Christians which is scary to me. When we start hiding who we really are or claim to be, then who we don't want to become starts to show up and take over.

Active Christians should be like Active Marines. Marines get paid by the hour so they're paid 24 hours a day because they don't stop being Marines when they're sleep or out of uniform or off base or away from military personnel.

Christians should be the same way.... we don't stop being christian because we aren't in a church or are away from the congregation or because the people around us aren't representing.

So again I ask... Who are the Christians? How do we know? What will you do from this day forward to represent?

" Live your life so those who don't know Jesus will learn of him because they know you"


Floyd the Wonderdog said...

I'm glad to see you're feeling better. I guess the Detroit Temple prayer roll worked again. ;^)

Discussion in the break room was about Mormons. I wasn't there. Someone said that Mormons weren't Christian. Someone else said my name and said that I was a Mormon and that I was the best Christian they had ever seen. Let your life be your testimony.

ShaBANG said...

I believe that Detroit prayer roll IS working, thank you :)

Do you recall a few years ago when a kid down south won some youth christian of the year award for his state, and then they took if from him because he was LDS?

Yeah, it's like that sometimes. We can sometimes be our own worse enemy though and you quote a line from a blessing I once recieved: "Your life will become your testimony."

Thanks for your encouragement and for having my back in Detroit!

Tequitia said...

This was a really great entry. It is so true, so true. It has me re-evaluating how I'm representing.

S'mee said...

This and also the previous post...EVERY time I read your blog I learn something of value. Thanks.

Big Brother, Little Sister Moments

Big Brother, Little Sister Moments
Hand in Hand


I earned some temporary wings!