I have a burden on my heart – and have for several weeks now. The unity – or should I say disunity – of believers.

Whether it be about purchasing a foreign or American car, eating vegetarian or omnivarian (did I just make up a word?), or even *gasp* politics – everyone has their “convictions” they must share with you – and they don’t want to listen to yours. They laugh at you. You’re stupid. You’re wrong. They’re right. Period.

As Christians, how about we focus first on our own desperately wicked hearts, more than on others’ wicked hearts?

Yes, we are admonished to judge fruit.
So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits. Matthew 7:17-20
But what about Matthew 7:3-5?
Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.
Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds. (emphasis added)
Notice I put the word convictions in quotations above? It’s because Jesus didn’t call us to beat people over the head with our “convictions.” In fact, He tells us to keep them to ourselves. 
 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the man who does not condemn himself by what he approves. Romans 14:22
Now, we are to rescue our brothers and sisters. 
My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins. James 5:19-20 
But we are not to beat them over the head.

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of the bickering.
For example -
What about this question, when asked who you’re voting for and then how you’re wrong, reply with this question:
Instead of asking who's voting for who - and laughing at each other's viewpoint - why do we not ever ask: who's going to fall on their face before a holy and righteous God and beg for mercy and forgiveness for their lack of action and lack of prayer for where our country is today?
Let’s end the bickering - over everything. Let’s fall on our faces before a holy and righteous God. We will then be united. If, collectively, our hearts are right before God, we will know the mind of Christ. 
For who has known the mind of the Lord, that he will instruct Him
But we have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2 
We will then be united. Without even discussing it with each other. Like-minded. 
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:1-4
Be agreeable, be sympathetic, be loving, be compassionate, be humble. That goes for all of you, no exceptions. No retaliation. No sharp-tongued sarcasm. Instead, bless—that’s your job, to bless. You’ll be a blessing and also get a blessing. 1 Peter 3:8-10
One last Scripture passage:
Keep reminding them of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen...Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will. (emphasis added) 2 Timothy 2:14, 23-26
Are you now burdened too? Did your heart burn within you? 
They said to one another, “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?” Luke 24:32 
Please join me in falling on my face before a righteous and holy God – let’s show the world a true picture of who God really is – without all the bickering.

because Beauty is more than skin deep,
Emily

Comments (11)

On October 8, 2012 at 8:05 AM , ifrog crafter said...

Very insightful. I don't talk politics much, because i don't like the bickering. I guess i never really looked at it this way. Thanks for the eye opener. (sharing)
<><

 
On October 8, 2012 at 8:24 AM , Cherished.Wife said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
 
On October 8, 2012 at 8:25 AM , Cherished.Wife said...

I don't talk politics either, because of the bickering. But then I realized, God has given me a different viewpoint for a reason, so I'd thought I would share it. Thanks for the encouragement, ifrog! <3, Emily P.S. I forgot to sign my name :)

 
On October 8, 2012 at 9:35 AM , Aloquin said...

Many times the bickering, or "pushing our view point," comes from pride. I know that is an area I need help with, and I thank God that He is helping me. I strive to be more humble and treat people with love, not prove my point. It is the Holy Spirit's job to convict... not mine :) Thank you, Emily. Beautiful and touching post. God used you to share this :)

 
On October 8, 2012 at 10:39 AM , sammysgrammy said...

Perfect posture for a follower of Jesus - on their face before God.

Thank you for the insight you shared.

 
On October 8, 2012 at 12:03 PM , ZudaGay said...

Amen!

 
On October 8, 2012 at 1:18 PM , Sheila Fisher said...

Emily, you hit the nail on the head with this post. Thanks so much for expressing my thoughts on this subject so eloquently.
God Bless.

 
On October 8, 2012 at 4:41 PM , Lorrie Esposito said...

A timely post for this election year. Of course this applies to so many topics besides politics. Thank you for referencing scripture and reminding us that a good Christian attitude should prevail above all else.

 
On October 8, 2012 at 5:07 PM , MYSAVIOR said...

WOW!!! Great, inspirational post. Totally worth the read.

♥♥♥
Sue

 
On October 8, 2012 at 5:48 PM , bananaorangeapple said...

Great post Emily.
It is good to remember that as Christians we have so much more in common than there are differences between us, and if we ever have trouble getting on we should just focus on what unites us.

 
On October 9, 2012 at 9:58 PM , Cynthia Stevenson said...

This is a great post, Emily! Much love, forgiveness and prayer should be at the crux of everything we think, say and do. We are human and will have our viewpoints. This is not right or wrong. But, it becomes wrong when we are "beating others" with our views, because we think we are right. Instead, we should cover "ourselves/others" and our "viewpoints" in prayer, asking the Lord to anoint our thoughts, words and deeds with HIS view, for our views are "soiled" and full of "self-righteousness." Yep, we have to keep cleansing ourselves and think less of us and more of HIM--easy to say and difficult to do. But, if we are striving to become more Spirit-filled, we will admit that we are "all-messed-up," even on the best of days, without HIS direction. I try to keep HIM at the forefront of my thoughts and I ask myself, continuously: Are these words, thoughts and deeds furthering the work of the Kingdom of God? This cuts down on any bickering and quarreling that may be squirreling-around in my heart. In fact, it cuts down on a lot of everything. It doesn't leave much room for cutting others down, no matter how their views differ from mine. So, yes, Emily, I agree that the best position for all of us is at the feet of Lord, in prayer and submission. Amen! Amen! Amen!