“… preach by their deeds.”
St. Francis of Assisi
I wanted to start out with that incredibly awesome quote by St. Francis of Assisi wherein he said, “Preach the gospel at all times. Use words when necessary.” Only, it turns out? He never said anything of the kind. I recently read an eye-opening post on why this is such a widely misused quote here. The only thing St. Francis did say, that was even remotely close to that, was the ending bit of an article on church leadership, which I used up above.
The sentiment behind that non-existent quote, though, is alive and kickin’ in this heart of mine. Lately, it seems like what I do is noticed far more than what I say. And, I’m not just thinking about my kidlets and the neighbors. This journey toward my real Home? It’s paved with good intentions. But, I think it’s safe to say that intentions don’t mean diddly squat, without action behind them.
Once you’ve asked Jesus to rule your heart, for all of your days, you are On Fire. True story. Oftentimes, though, that new-found faith includes a passion that can cloud better judgement. Or, as was the case with me, on far too many an occasion, any judgement.
I’ve made some mistakes along the way, in this grand adventure of following Jesus. And, while I’ve never faltered in my desire to be like Him, I’ve faltered plenty in my methods.
I’m not naive or vain enough to believe, for one hot second, either, that I won’t ever do it again in the future.
But, in an effort to remind myself of the importance of putting a sock in it, once in a while; and, to spare some poor soul from any similar encounters of the offensive kind, I’m sharing my top 3 Most Passionate Mishaps with you. Thankfully, they are all smothered in grace galore.
- Telling someone, who isn’t seeking a relationship with Jesus, much less any spiritual Higher Power, How Very Much They Need Him! I’m talkin’ about banging that childhood friend, who couldn’t give two hoots about religion or spirituality, right over the head with your brand spankin’ new Bible.
- Offering to drive on a road trip with your friends, for the sole purpose of being able to commandeer the music selections. So that you can, you know, “expose them to Cool Christian Music”. The Entire Way There. And back.
- Jumping in, uninvited, to help soothe a poor hurting soul by “reminding” them of a popular Bible verse, and following it up with a platitude like, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”
Now please, don’t misunderstand me here. I’m well aware that a good word in turn can brighten someone’s outlook or bring comfort to a painful situation.
I’ve learned, however, that this usually involves more praying and less talking.
Oh. Yes. It. Does.
Please, PLEASE TELL ME, I’m not the only one who has made these sorts of mistakes along the way?