Wednesday, June 10, 2015

A Boat of Many Colors // by Kimberly



There’s always that one person, right? That one person who is overly needy for attention. That one person who is louder than everyone else. That one person who can have ten different personalities depending on whomever they’re currently standing next to. And, just for the record, I’m not at all thinking of just one person; there seems to be that one person everywhere I go.
Tell me I’m not the only one that’s seeing this.
Why do people fall into this? Is it a personality disorder? Just how they’re parents raised them? Maybe they’re compensating for insecurities rooted in childhood scars? Eh… maybe in select cases, but those aren’t even good excuses. You can probably predict what I’m going to say next.

It’s a heart issue.

Yeah, there might be some insecurities there, but the compensation? That’s a result of a lack of relationship with Christ, and a high priority of self. (Pride.) If what’s-his/her-name had a deep and thriving daily relationship with Christ, their need for attention, compliments, or multitudes of friends would be quenched. If the same said person prioritized daily dying to self, and living to serve Christ and others, they would find little time for fulfilling fleshly desires. Not to mention, once you see the needs of others, your own issues will look pathetic and altogether insignificant.

 

So first off, is this you?

 

When you’re together with friends, do you catch yourself morphing into them? Do you laugh whenever they laugh, just because they laughed? Are you willing to try on a dress that obviously doesn’t meet your standards if you’re out shopping with friends and they say you should try it on “just for fun”? Do you like coffee just because your friends like it?
On the other side of things, if a certain family you know comes over for dinner, will you remove all of your makeup and take off all your jewelry? What if that family moved next door? Would you just stop wearing all of your clothes except the one or two outfits you consider to be modest enough for them?
You can’t love both sides. Though the verse refers to entirely different matters, Jesus taught on the issue of trying to accommodate two masters in Matthew 6:24, saying, “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other…”
“Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men. They speak vanity every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with a double heart do they speak.” (Psalm 12:1 and 2)
See that phrase ‘flattering lips’?

 

Flattery: excessive and insincere praise, especially that given to further one's own interests.

What is your intent when you give praise to others? (For their clothes, talents, or anything.) Then, according to Psalm 12, if it is for your own interests (like, gaining a friend, maybe?), it is ungodly.
I think a lot of people struggle with this. And when I say people, I mean young ladies. J

 

Secondly, what are you doing to help those around you?

 

     1.      Be a friend worth following.

That always confused me when I was younger. I should follow the good examples. But I should be a leader, not a follower? That’s… confusing.
Maybe this will help: people follow other people. It’s innate. God put it in Adam and Eve, and it has blossomed into a huge deal, especially within the last 20 years, or so. I mean, who doesn’t have at least one social media account?! People are going to follow others. You have to be careful to follow good examples, and you also have to be careful to be one of those good examples for the generations coming up behind you. 
I can’t just write a blog post and cure the world of its troubles. This pattern will undoubtedly continue on until the world is no more. We just want to improve the pattern.
By being a Godly friend, free of flattery, and always pointing others towards Christ, you are setting a beautiful example for others that may or may not be following you. You are encouraging others around you to be themselves, and decide for themselves, based upon Biblical principles, what their standards are, and what they like and enjoy, personally. You aren’t judging them for going to the movie theater once in a while. You aren’t sticking your nose up in the air because they wear pants. Yeah, I know, you wouldn’t dare wear pants to church (or whatever your eternally insignificant issue is), but Jesus loves them just exactly the same as He loves you. And newsflash, Jesus died on the cross for them, too. Don’t forget to let them know. You aren’t going to catch leprosy and die by talking to a lady wearing pants, for goodness sakes. Tattoos aren’t contagious.

     2.      Advertise your good example

If you are really, really trying to be a Christ-like friend in every way possible, the rest of us should be able to tell.
     -In countenance
In your general attitude, we should see Christ reflected.
     -In conversation
In your words (the words themselves, and also the tone with which you speak), we should see Christ reflected. Think: would Christ say such-and-such? No way. Christ knew silly things weren't nearly as important as the relationship itself.
And, here comes the modesty part:

 

You are a build board, advertising to the world who you are and Who you stand for.

This is a big responsibility. Huge, actually.

“Out of one hundred men, one will read the Bible, the other ninety-nine will read the Christian.”

     -Dwight L. Moody
A boat at sea can communicate its purpose and motive by raising specific flags. Just the same, a young lady’s purpose and motive can be communicated by what she wears. I mean, your countenance and conversation might be great, but if you dress like a mall mannequin, few people will make it to your countenance. It’s already been communicated who you belong to (or, rather, Who you don’t belong to), and what your motives are.
What flags are you raising? Different flags depending on who you are with? Are you a friend worth following? Can people see that in your flags?
Just some things to get you thinking. J
Comment!!
     1.      What is your favorite/preferred way of communicating to others? (Be it in person, over phone, over text, email, letter…?)
     2.      In which mode of communication do you feel like you are being the most Christ-like friend?
     3.      In which mode of communication do you feel like you are being the least Christ-like friend?
Have a good week, y’all!! And may God bless you!!


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this detailed blog post. It was an encouragement to me! :) Those were some tough, good questions at the end of the post. I probably feel most Christ-like through a phone conversation, text, or email because it is easier to filter what you say when you aren't face to face with someone. I am working on being equally Christ like in person (my favorite form of communication) as I strive to be through other forms of communication. :) Thank you for those tough questions!

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