Praying (instead of pointing fingers)

critical christian

I am a Christian.

I criticize my sister and brother in Christ anytime I see them straying off the path I think is right.

I make sure to point out the wrongs and flaws in people every chance that I get.

And if I can’t criticize them to their face then I just do it to my friends behind their back.

Because as a Christian it’s my duty to make sure everyone is judged and corrected and living for God just the way I want.

This is not the gospel that we preach on Sunday morning.

But unfortunately sometimes that’s the gospel that we choose to live.

And I am starting to see it more every day.

The brother or sister in Christ that is meant to support you and hold you up is the very one that brings you down.

It doesn’t make any sense logically.

I live in Seattle, which of course means I’m a Seahawks fan (go hawks!) and sometimes I wonder… what if every time those football players set foot on the field for practice instead of practicing plays, training, and preparing for their big game they decided to purposefully just walk around and beat one another up. The player, the coach, and everyone involved. Because that would make them “stronger” or get a point across?

We would think that’s absolutely ridiculous.

How is an injured player going to have the strength and ability to throw a pass and to score a touchdown?

Their wounds will only stop them from playing their best game.

And yet we don’t always think it’s so ridiculous when it comes to Christianity and our own brothers and sisters in Christ.

It’s sad but often times what would never be accepted on a football field is accepted in the body of Christ today.

Sometimes as Christians we forget that we are on the same team when it comes to living for Christ.

We forget that we are fighting the same battle for lost souls.

That in the end we all have the same goal and mission to accomplish.

And yet instead of working together as one we hypothetically speaking “beat each other up”.

We waste our time criticizing each others lifestyles and theological beliefs, we judge and share our opinion to anyone who listens about someone who we believe is “doing it wrong” and in the end we just tear each other down instead of build each other up.

God’s Word says if anyone is caught in transgression their brothers and sisters in Christ should restore him in a spirit of gentleness (Galatians 6:1).

And that we should be ready to exhort, reprove, and rebuke in and out season with complete patience and teaching (2 Timothy 4:2).

Correction is good.

It’s necessary.

It’s vital to the growth of every believer in the body of Christ but sometimes we confuse correction with condemnation and criticism, and in the process we become more like the world and nothing like Christ.

John 13:35 says that the way that the world will know we are Christ’s disciples is by the way we love one another and sometimes I wonder how well we reflect the truth.

I log onto facebook only to see yet again never-ending debates of Christians arguing about some controversial belief that will never be resolved.

Where is the love in that?

I read popular blogs of people tearing down pastors (particularly, Mark Driscoll these past few weeks) and everything they do wrong without an ounce of gentleness in them.

Where is the love in that?

I go to social gathering and overhear people talking about how “so-and-so” in the church is doing it all wrong.

Where is the love in that?

We are called to love each other the way that Christ loved us but how can we when we are too busy pointing judgmental fingers and trying to prove our own points?

Oh how easy it is for the enemy to distract us from our purpose in life by helping us fight one another instead of fight in the real war for lost souls.

He doesn’t need to do much to help us lose the fight long before we even begin, just help us find someone new to disagree with and criticize.

How sad is it that we have the answer to a world in need of Christ and yet we waste it away on petty arguments and fights.

My challenge to you and I this, not just for today but for every day of our lives: even when it’s tempting don’t tear your brother or sister down, not on social media, not through discussion, and not in your own mind no matter how much you disagree with them, no matter how they wronged you, and no matter how sinful you think they are.

We already have the world against us, why add more ammunition to the fight?

People are human, which means we all screw up.

Even the best of us.

Pastors, missionaries, and leaders.

You won’t always see eye to eye with people on theological subjects, on how ministries should run, or on how to live your life.

But just because someone does it different than you doesn’t give you the green light to criticize and judge.

Let’s be the kind of brothers and sister that don’t choose to injure each other with our words, our thoughts, and our actions.

Let’s not be the person who adds more weight to the burdens of the people around us when we should be praying for them.

We may have a different understanding of certain things in our walk with Christ but in the end we are all on the same team for God.

We all want victory for heaven.

But we won’t get it by bringing each other down.

Who needs one more stone thrown at them?

Who needs one more burden of hurtful words and actions places upon their shoulders?

Who needs one more wound to their soul and heart?

Not my pastors and leaders, not my family, and not my friends.

And not yours either.

It’s okay to write your opinion online, it’s okay to talk and share what’s on your heart, it’s okay to correct and to show someone who is lost the way but it’s only okay if you do it the way God calls us to: with gentleness and love.

Let’s not forget who the real enemy in this world is, it’s not our brothers and sisters that we don’t always agree with.

Let’s destroy him as we fight for lost souls together in unity.

And let’s show the world that we are different through our love.

 Be blessed and never stop loving, especially those who are hardest to love. -Anna… 

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” –John 15:12

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20 thoughts on “Praying (instead of pointing fingers)

    • Thanks Kelly! I think it’s something all of us need to be reminded of once in a while. It’s easy to become judgmental Christians rather than loving and forgiving towards those who have wronged us or who we don’t see eye to eye with. I hope you have a blessed day!

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  1. Thank you so much for sharing that message. While I try not to tear others down, Sometimes I still say things I shouldn’t. But if we learn to see others as Jesus sees them, with eyes of love, we’ll learn to respond in a more positive way.

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  2. Reblogged this on Growing In Grace and commented:
    Man, this is good!

    Our first instinct when we see people who are far from God shouldn’t to be punch them verbally, pronounce condemnation on them or compare their spiritual condition to what we perceive ours to be–our first reaction should be to weep. And pray. And love.

    Reminded me of this song:

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a beautiful heart you have ! I am so blessed to have come across your page .
    I am already sharing your thoughts and wisdom with others to encourage and uplift them .
    Gods richest blessings poured out over your ministry – pressed down shaken and overflowing and thankyou !

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  4. This is awesome. I definitely have been guilty of judging and unkind thoughts towards my fellow Christians. And yet, I can’t stand when people do it to me! I think it’s something almost all of us fall into.

    I really shouldn’t. I realize I often am a failure, but I am hurt when I feel judged. So why have I done it to others?! People definitely don’t make sense sometimes.

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    • Thanks Stefanie! It is definitely hard to live out the “golden rule” (treat others the way you want to be treated) in our own willpower and strength, but the more closely we walk with Christ the easier it will be to reflect Him in all that we do, including in how we respond and talk about others even if we think we have a reason to judge. It always helps to go back to the cross and remember that everyone is in need of forgiveness and grace (us included) and no-one is allowed to judge because in the end we are all sinners who are made new with Christ.

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  5. Reblogged this on Hannah's Hope & Prayer and commented:
    I don’t know about you but I am guilty about pointing fingers at my bothers and sisters in Christ if they are doing something that I don’t think is the “Christian thing to do”. This is a great post from Anna on her blog that I follow Daughter by Design! Check out her post and blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Yes! Amen, amen, amen!!! I’m so glad I found your blog. It rips my heart to pieces when I see how critical the Church has become. Prayer is absolutely where we should turn. Thank you for sharing words that every Christian really needs to hear!

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    • Hi Emily, yes, prayer should always be the first thing we run to when we are tempted to criticize. It breaks my heart to see Christians acting less like family and more like enemies through criticism when we should be treating each other with love. It’s up to each one of us to choose to live, speak, and walk out Christ’s calling in our lives in grace and love and hopefully encourage others to do the same as well! Be blessed!

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