This comic owns me from by Steven Pastis.

Churches and church members argue and fight over the silliest things!  We snicker when they fight about carpet color… where to put the flowers (In the baptistery or in front of pulpit?)… or style of music.  One church I served had a number of members get bent out of shape because we didn’t do “The Birthday Barrel” each month after worship (You don’t want to know that story!).

Yet for some, these are serious matters… worth whacking someone on the head for.  Goodness knows there are plenty of church members who’ve believed it was their call to whack a minister over the head “For the good of the church.”  And there have been more than enough ministers who’ve done the same thing and called it preaching!

I have listened as people question the faith of my dad for smoking as defiling God’s temple.  Yet the accuser had a critical spirit toward anyone who didn’t agree with them AND he was overweight (Didn’t Jesus say something about it’s what comes out of a person that defiles them?  I also think there is something in the Bible about gluttony too.).  I abuse my temple by pouring several ice coffees into it every day.  One day I might change because of God’s conviction (Or inability to sleep), but not because someone guilted and criticized me.

The worst case is when Christians condemn and judge those who aren’t Christians in the name of Christ… and do it with a harsh attitude in the process.  Nothing gives Jesus a black eye like how those people act.

How nice it would be if we Christians did something so radical as taking serious the Gospel and the Scripture.  Wouldn’t it be a blessing if we didn’t have to blow out other’s candle thinking it made ours brighter?  It would be refreshing for laughter not to come at the expense of others, but from a heart that can find humor in other ways.

Consider Colossians 3:12-15…

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.