Thursday, August 21, 2008

For those Christian leaders who come off as jerks

I've heard a lot of very well meaning Christian leaders in the name of being honest and straight forward virtually explain away the fact that a lot of times, they come across as arrogant jerks.

I agree that we should share the truth in love... the thing is, I think we have a low view of what love is. While I'm a full advocate of "tough love," what I have been reading recently in the scriptures seems to clearly define what love is (and isn't)
1 Corinthians 13:1-13
1If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

So when we share the "truth in love" - are we being patient, kind, not rude, not angry, to protect others, etc. I know that for me personally, loving others no matter what is probably the hardest thing about being a follower of Jesus Christ. To love unconditionally in a way that is civil, kind, and considerate of not just my agenda, but God's love and work in the lives of others as well.

So what do you think? How do we speak the truth in love without coming off as jerks?

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