Saturday, January 3, 2009

Random Thoughts

I am still trying to digest all that I have learned this last week. I spent several days at a conference out of state and have so much I want to write about, but am still processing it all. I also got several good books for Christmas and many DVDs, all of which have good content to write about.

One thing that I heard at the conference has been on my mind ever since. I had recently written a post about considering others greater than ourselves; however, I feel my understanding of this verse grew by leaps and bounds at this conference. The speaker was talking about how he used to work as a stock broker many years ago and he got really good at selling the stocks at their height just before the market dropped reaping the highest profit possible and leaving the buyer without a profit. God convicted him that he was not thinking of the buyer and only himself. The speaker began to talk about being fair in our business transactions to be sure that we are looking out for the other person or business and not just our own interests. He spoke of always paying what is due to another in a timely manner. I began to think of how this practically works. How often have I felt I was owed a good deal on merchandise I wanted without thinking of what my deal might cost the seller? I really want to work on keeping this kind of mentality to consider others in all I do—to switch my focus off of “me” to blessing those around me. God will take care of me. I don’t need to worry about making sure I profit the best from a transaction, but that all is done in fairness considering the others needs first.

Another thing that was discussed at the conference was the election of Obama. While many in the Church do not support his policies, it is our duty as followers of Christ to respect all those in authority and to pray for our leaders. When Paul wrote that we ought to respect all in authority, Nero, a great persecutor of Christians was the man in charge. Many Christians are reacting out of fear to the potential changes coming in the Obama administration. We should not be reacting out of fear. We should be praying for his safety and his administration. We should speak respectfully of him. Yes, in this land we have the right to voice disagreements about policies and laws and we can do that and should. But we must do it with respect to the authority of the President. I wasn’t very kind regarding the Clinton administration. I didn’t understand what I do now. I spoke many things I shouldn’t have. But that is not the Lord’s way. I intend to guard my tongue and strive to speak always kindly and respectfully regarding Obama. I want to change my thinking in this. While I still disagree with many of his policies, I will respect him as my President. I will pray for him.

These are the two main things that keep rolling around in my mind since the conference. I have much more to write on in the coming weeks. Stay tuned.


Quixote said...

Great post, Karla. Perhaps the number one problem in the church today is its involvement in politics. Politics is not the church's mission, period. Where she has involved herslef politically has historically always resulted in great sin.

Her mission is the gospel, the teaching of God's word, the edification and exhortation of believers, the feeding of the poor, the care of the orphan and the widow, etc. We should be ashamed of ourselves.

Karla said...

Well, I disagree a little with that. I think the Kingdom applies to all spheres of culture including the government. But I think there is right ways and wrong ways to go about it. If we are leaving people feeling condemned and demeaned we have not been sharing the Kingdom. But if we can help show the Kingdom way of doing things in a way that upholds the dignity of the other person, I think much can be accomplished.

Quixote said...

Most Christians disagree with me here, so don't take it personally. I can't really detect anything in your response that I would disagree with, unless you mean by the Kingdom applying to all spheres of culture that we as Christians should be trying to take over the government politically.

Certainly, the church is called to proclaim right and wrong, and no sphere of culture is off limits, but to attempt to enforce right and wrong by the usurpation of secular authority seems contrary to Biblical teaching.

Karla said...

I agree. I am not talking about legislating Christianity. Constantine is a good example of that being a bad idea. I'm not really sure what it would look like--not a theocracy or a Church in political power sort of thing at all.

Check out Lance Wallnau's stuff. You may be able to listen to him on you-tube.