It's hard to be a Christian. People mistakenly believe that Christians are looking for something to comfort them or make them feel good. Christianity makes me uncomfortable!
Christianity calls me to forgive those who hurt me deeply. It requires I strive for Christ-like friendship with people I may not like or strongly disagree with.
Being a Catholic means dragging myself to Mass, even when I feel empty, to praise, worship and receive my Lord. To extend my hand and heart in a sign of peace with those who challenge me. Watching the martyrs in the world I have to acknowledge that my faith may even require me to give up my freedoms or my life.
If you want easy, maybe moral relativism would be a better choice. Christianity is hard, but that's what Jesus and love require.
How often have you heard or even participated in conversations that start like this,
"Don't mention this to anyone, but so-and-so really needs prayers because... (Insert private info here)."?
Unfortunately, we often confuse a true desire for prayer and concern with our need to share secrets. In the end it is really one thing, gossip!
If the other person's needs were really our focus we would not reveal details of the struggle they are going through. We would bend ourselves like a pretzel to protect their anonymity. We could spend more time in prayer ourselves for that person and less time discussing their situation with others.
This is a good reminder for myself. If the words coming out of my mouth could hurt, not help someone, then why am I uttering them. God bless.
Judgement is dangerous on so many levels. Scripture reminds us that we will be judged as we judge, but I think we may be responsible for the reverse too.
I have recognized that we often judge others by the way we ourselves behave. This was made clear to me twice during Holy Week.
The first incident involved a woman I know. She wrongly stated that I hadn't done something important that I knew I had. I was hurt and angry to be judged for something I had done correctly. I immediately jumped into a bad place of judgement in my own head. I had been judged wrongly, but I turned around and was doing the same thing. I didn't realize this until a mutual friend shared with me that the woman had been struggling with some memory issues. I was so busy concentrating on the fact that I was right, that I missed the real issue and even lacked compassion in the situation. I was consumed with my feelings and missed that poor woman's own frustration at not being able to remember what had happened only a few days before.
Then, my daughter was driving down the highway when another driver started honking and trying to get her attention. The more he honked and swerved, the angrier she became. She was judging him to be an obnoxious driver who wanted to pass her. She finally pulled over and so did he. He had been frantically trying to get her attention, because her bumper had come loose and was dragging. He was concerned she would be in danger. The gentleman even helped her rig her bumper up with a shoestring until she could get to safety. She felt horrible about her snap judgement of his behavior.
How many times do we fall into this dangerous place of rash judgement? Perhaps, when we begin to find ourselves going down this dark road, we could stop and ask the Holy Spirit for the wisdom to see the things we should see to judge the situation correctly and not judge the individual at all. God Bless.