Beth Moore had me cracking up telling the story of her camping trip in an RV on her session six video in her James study. She told the story of bears under the camper. Then she talked about these sweet hummingbirds she saw the next day. She was commenting on how pretty they were when all of the sudden they came up and began to peck her. She expected to be scared of the bears, but the birds caught her off guard. We often expect difficult things in this world, but we are especially shocked when attacks come from our brothers and sisters in Christ.
The pain can cause us to become jaded, flippant, and fall into the thinking that everyone is duplicitous and hypocritical. This is dangerous ground to walk on when we wear the glasses of cynicism. In the video, Beth Moore described cynicism as “carnality that thinks its smart.” Ouch…. been there.
These are the top 5 reasons not to get cynical according to Beth Moore, author of James: Mercy Triumphs over Judgment.
1. Jesus is still flagrantly changing lives. (He frees addicts, heals, and changes lives every day.)
2. Real people are doing the real thing all over the real world. (With no publicity there are incredible men and women running homeless shelters, caring for children with special needs, and staying true to their marriage vows day in and day out simply because they love Jesus.)
3. The appetitite to study Scripture is increasingly ravenous. (Women used to sit around and paint ducks and sew quilts while many are now discussing God’s Word and applying its truth to their lives.)
4. Some long-standing barriers are breaking down. (There was a day when denominations stood as islands. Today in my Bible study alone we have women from many very different church homes coming together to delve into God’s Word.)
5. God will kick your tail! (This is my favorite one! If we stay in our cynicism – God will get our attention in whatever way He needs to draw us out of our smart carnality. For me – this usually involves some serious humbling!)
So when I’m struggling with the hypocrisy all around(including my own heart), I pray God will bring these things to mind. Hopefully I can allow Him to soften me up quickly when I get cynical. That way I can avoid a godly tail-whooping. I’ve had a few in the past and though the results were good, the process was not one I want to repeat.