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Seeking Things Above


If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. (Col 3:1)

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2008-07-01

Radical Christianity

About six years ago, I was sitting with my then four-year old son watching TV.  On the screen they showed one of the recently captured terrorist.  His hair was ruffled, his eyes were puffy, and he looked like an overall wreck.  To me, he looked like he was breathing, so he looked like he was doing too well.  My four-year old on the other hand, he asks, "Do you think that man knows that God loves him?"

Wow.  I remember thinking back then how awesome it was that God can speak directly to your heart through your own child.  I'd like to say that I've been praying for terrorists for the past six years but that would be a lie.  My epiphany on loving my enemies lasted all of a day or two. 

How can I love someone that would kill innocent women and children?  How can I love someone, that if I was ever in the wrong place, at the wrong time, they would kill me and my family because I'm an American or because I worship Jesus and not Allah?  How could God ask me to do that?

I guess maybe...because the cross is bigger than their sin...and without the cross...my sin is just as great.

I blogroll this site called, There's Something Deep Inside.  On it there's a post about this site called, Adopt a Terrorist for Prayer.  This brought back memories of when God spoke to me about loving my enemies through the innocent eyes of my son

Now this is radical Christianity.


9 comments:

baddogmooney said...

Thanks for the shout out. It really does get me thinking about how much Christ loves us. He knew before hand all the crap we would get into, and he gave His life anyway. At this point in my life, I don't know that I would have done the same.

- mooney

Mandy said...

Wisdom so often comes from kids because their thoughts are not as tainted. Over time, little bits have creeped in to distort my views - desensitization, non-Biblical viewpoints, wanting to fit in - those types of things confuse the thoughts. But - kids just see it how it is. Black and white. They ask, "why would a mom just kill her baby because she doesn't want it?" It's really not that hard, but we let it be when we try to conform the Bible to what we want it to be.

My job as a mom is to teach my kids God's principles. My prayer is that I will be able to teach them what God wants me to teach them, and not throw in all the extra stuff that makes decisions confusing. I want to teach them to hold all of their thoughts and decisions up to what the Bible says.

An example of the stuff that makes decisions confusing would be a young person making a career decision. The world (and many times those we go to for Godly counsel) tells us to find what makes the most money; but, I want to lead my kids to use the gifts God has given them, regardless of the pay. If the missionaries made their decision based on salary, who would be out there in the remote areas spreading the Gospel?

This post was great - it makes us think.

carol said...

Wow, I never though about praying for one individual terrorist. Thank you for a challenging post.

Tony said...

mooney - thanks for stopping by and thanks for being so real on your blog.

carol - thanks. Throwing out the challenge is easy. I only wish I could follow through with some consistency.

mandy - that's why you're the greatest wife and mom ever.

Chad said...

Tony-
You have a great website here. I'm glad we have bumped into each other in the cyber world.
This is a challenging word for all of us. I remember hearing shortly after 9/11 a former Muslim turned Christian who is now a missionary in Egypt and other parts of the Middle East challenge us to pray for the salvation of Bin Laden moreso than his capture and death. He told us to imagine the impact a saved Bin Laden could have on the world - far more than a dead one.

The truth is we are called to love even our enemies. As followers of the one who suffered for us "while we were enemies of God" (Rom. 5), we should be willing to do the same. Not an easy task, but who said it would be easy?

grace and peace,
Chad

Mrs Pat D said...

It is hard to hate someone, when you pray for them. Jude 21-23 says a lot about how we are to approach someone NOT saved. Thank you for the reminder that we are not to judge one another. God Bless you and your family.

Mrs Pat D - Belton, Tx.

Tony said...

Mrs Pat D -

What a great reference in Jude. Thanks for sharing these verses and thank you for your kind comments.

Grace and peace to you and your family.

Tony

Mitch said...

How about instead of praying for terrorists you do something constructive- it is not simply religious differences that provoke such hostility from those who would become terrorists. If the west would stop invading and exploiting the east every decade then maybe eastern cultures would have a reason to start liking us.

The misconception that faith is a virtue is the number one reason why so many westeners simply accept the way the world is, as opposed to evoking positive change (without a religious agenda).

This post has really annoyed me, because it just goes to show how people who believe in the afterlife can be so apathetic in this one.

Tony said...

Mitch -

Thanks for coming by and commenting. You're right of course, if their is no God then praying has no value. However, if you do believe in God and in particular, Jesus Christ, then praying can do more than we could ever do on our own.

You are also correct that actions are needed. Prayer is not just a plea to God to intervene and make the world right. Praying for your enemies changes you. A changed you will go out into the world and strive to make a difference.

That said, admitting that the west has often been driven by greed, you are not familiar with world history to infer that all the hate between terrorist and the rest of the world is do to western capitalism.

That's an extreme over generalization of the problem and serves no value to finding a resolution to a problem centuries in the making.

Grace and peace friend.

Tony

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