Monday, August 19, 2013

I can dish it out, but I can't take it.



I've noticed a bit of an annoying conundrum in myself:
My opinions, and my style of expressing those opinions, seem to piss people off.

Though I am assured in my reasoning, having to defend my beliefs to anyone, even folks genuinely asking for clarification, causes me so much distress that it often takes me days to recover, and I find that it's challenging to function in daily life, leaving me questioning:

Why has God given me this feistiness to speak up, but allowed me to experience this timidity in defending it?

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7

I know I'm not always right.
In fact, I'm never going to be ALL right. 
Everything will be skewed by my experiences, my biases, and because I'm a fallen creature.

Just because I've formed a belief based on what God has revealed to me, does NOT necessarily mean that I'm right in my conclusion. 
In fact, I'm pretty certain that The Spirit will reveal more to me in the future, which will almost definitely change, or at the very least tweak, my current stance. I will be in this process until the day I die. It's what we call "sanctification," Christ changing us bit by bit, more and more into His image.

Some of these changes have  been so drastic, I compare them to a pendulum swinging.
As God reveals His Truths to me, my belief and actions will sometimes swing WAY the other way! 

I'm sure it can be quite startling to acquaintances who are not in my life enough to know that I've had a revelation, but observe the crazy swings!

I'm certainly not shy about expressing what God has revealed, or how it's changed me.
And, like I said, many of these opinions and how they play out, sometimes rub folks the wrong way. 

So, should I stop?
Nope.

I'm sure Paul pissed off more than a few people when he wished they'd cut off their own penises (Galations 5:12).
Or when Isaiah broke it to them that all of their good deeds were like showing off used tampons, saying to God, "aren't you proud of my achievement?". (Isaiah 64:6)

I think my inability to challenge or accept criticism is because some part of me isn't fully believing in and resting in the fullness of the Gospel. 

"God is gracious, so I don't have to prove myself.
God is glorious, so I don't have to fear others.
God is great, so I don't have to be in control.
God is good, so I don't have to look elsewhere."

I don't expect you to coddle me. 
I need to learn how to do this thing.
But I would remind you to approach others in love, not knowing where they are in their walk with The Lord, ya know?