We cannot make people believe the Word of God

It is terribly difficult to refrain from judging others when they fall upon hard times, especially when you are enjoying a stretch of good times. The tendency is to point our self-righteous finger at the person who is down while saying “look at me” . It is so easy to grow impatient with those who fall behind and start preaching at them instead of encouraging them to do better. Life as a Christian is not equivalent to some kind of boot camp but rather a spiritual family seeking to edify, encourage and comfort one another.

Many years ago I was called aside by a leader in the ministry who I trusted and told that if I did not stop preaching and teaching AT people, I would never be effective in my ministry. Very few people enjoy getting yelled at, and fewer still respond positively to being made to feel like a lowly worm because of everything they do wrong. As teachers, preachers, ministers etc, we must always strive to lift up people and never rub their noses in their failures or shortcomings.

I remember vividly a time in the 1970's when I felt justified in going off on an audience whom I felt were deliberately being apathetic toward the Word of God being spoken. I remember railing upon these believers for quite some time. When I was done, I patted myself on the back for what I deemed to be a good job of making these people see the error in their ways. Perhaps they did, but instead of becoming more receptive to what I was saying, they tuned me out and when I was done they immediately left and never came back.

I learned that day that rarely is it God's will to make His people feel inferior, worthless or incapable of getting things right. Rarely is it God's will to allow my feelings to overflow in what I am teaching. In other words, it may have felt good to let loose that day but since I drove the people away, it was not what God wanted. Anytime we have the opportunity to speak God's Word, we must exercise great patience and longsuffering with whomever we are speaking to. When we lose patience, we almost always lose the person.

There is not a one of us who has not gotten our feelings hurt because of the apathy and lack of response of people we speak the Word of God to. Somehow we must rise above the natural tendency to yell, scream and shake the person into listening. Somehow we must rise up and believe that our job is to speak but it is God's job to give the increase. We cannot make someone listen and believe what we are saying. All we can do is keep speaking the Word of truth in love and trusting God to work in their hearts to believe His Word and receive the glorious benefits of it.

 Kirk M
I have been a member of ChristianBlog.Com for 10 years, 11 months and 8 days.
I have published 2,287 blogs and 1,779 comments.
Beth M (@blest)

Amen, amen, amen, amen!

Let him who has ears to hear...

Thomas Mcgraw (@thomasmcgraw)

Thank you Kirk for your much needed encouragement in this quick to judge world. I am reminded of Romans 12 and 14 in their entirety whenever I see or hear someone judging and exalting oneself. I know that we all struggle with this but it is easy to thwart if only this simple question is asked before succumbing to impulse, what would Jesus do?
The Spirit will guide us if we let it.
God's peace

K Reynolds (@kreynolds)

This is something I have been guilty of doing too many times. It is also something that I have often observed here on CB as well. I think that most of the time we mean well but we get carried away by our zeal and behave rashly. That just reminded me of something but I think I will safe that for a blog.:wink:

May we learn when to speak and when to listen and when we speak, may we truly do so in love.


K :princess:

Sarah Vm (@godissogood)

Well, I'm not a teacher or minister - unless you count trying to explain the concept of wisdom to a three-year old! - but the lesson was certainly still interesting to me.

I think you are absolutely right Kirk. Nobody wants to be ranted at. Unless, of course, it's the humorous kind of tirade certain bloggers do so well from time to time.

It is pretty easy, biting my tongue when communicating with the people I serve in a professional context. It's never quite been the same, in my faith, because as you and K have related, I sometimes get impassioned about something and have pulled out the soapbox, before realising it could be damaging for someone else. That is an especially important thing to remember in an online community and I really thank you for the reminder.

So glad you were well enough to write this! I pray your health will improve each day and ask for God's blessings on you and Beth!


Roger Siow (@rogersiow)

Dear sir,

I cannot agree more with you. I am an atheist for the past 35 years and a 100% christ-rebellious person. In the past, all my christian friends failed to convince me. In my childhood days, I have a good gal friend who would preach about Jesus Christ to me when we commute to school everyday for a year and that did not convert or convince me. It was God that I experienced that I begin to see and believe. I agreed as disciples of Christ our role is not to convince or convert, we are to plan the seeds and let God do his miracle. We need to show our lives to the communities as Christians so that other lost soul can see God's love and come to HIM.

Indeed God is good and I pray you and your family will be blessed continuously by the Lord for now and eternally.

God bless