On public criticism and some links
Not much is getting down around my house these days. I am in full-swing of first trimester yuck (almost 10 weeks! Praying for a heartbeat this Saturday at my first appointment). So, I am reading, listening to messages, and playing with my kids a lot. I’ve lots of time to think and pray. I wanted to post a few links I’ve really benefited from over the last little while that I would recommend to any believer!
Something else on my heart that I’d love anyone to prayerfully consider is the tendency to either criticize or exalt people who write, speak, sing for the glory of God…or put forth any other public manifestation of love for the Lord. It is my desire to see brothers and sisters be able to receive from each other, with maturity, and to have the ability when need be, to sift the chaff away in a discreet manner. None of us have it all together (we ALL have errors in our theology) and we will disagree on some issue or another…but do we need to get so caught up in someone else’s error it so as to totally write someone off? And online for the whole world to see?
There is a context in which mature believers must teach younger believers what the truth is and how to discern between good and evil, and to correct believers who are living in a way that doesn’t line up with Scripture (we must do this for one another! Proverbs, 2 Tim 4:2, Titus 1:9, 2:1, 2:15, Heb 3:13, etc.).
It’s dangerous to say that we should not evaluate what is being taught–we must (Acts 17:11), but I’m speaking to this tendency to dissect something someone says, writes, sings to the point of having little to no appreciation for what they’ve offered. In addition, instead of affirming their love for the Lord and what they’ve offered, it’s labeled “unhelpful” or the like. I see more and more of this public (online) ripping apart of something one has written, said, sung in our culture of everything being online.
A personal example of the body showing love and appreciation to another, despite age, ability, poise, etc. We recently were at a church for a special occasion. Tara went to the front, while everyone else was sitting, and danced as music was being played. The response of the pastor and other leaders (and members) was to come up to her afterward and thank her for ministering to the Lord and to them. Wow. Certainly controversial and a problem to most, but here received– with tears I might add, by several. What we miss!
(I think I’ve been clear that there is a necessary place of correction, rebuke, training, etc. I am referring to a culture that has been cultivated of severely critical hearts)
That said, I’m sure that at least one of the links I post will have someone deemed “controversial.” My request would be instead of skipping over the link, to consider what the person has to say, take the good truth, and toss out what may not line up with Scripture, privately. If we are not babes in Christ, we should be able to do this (and if you are, cry out to the Lord for discernment and put yourself under someone older and wiser who can teach you!).
When God Hides You - A state that the Lord has been teaching me so much about, this post resonated with me. And there isn’t anything I’ve read by Sara that the Lord doesn’t use in some way in my spirit.
The Perseverance of Jesus – A message by Mike Bickle that touches on being hidden, in addition to perseverance. So good!
Advice for Worship Leaders, Prophetic Singing Part 1 and Part 2- I’m not a worship leader, but this was so encouraging to me and I hope that worship leaders take the time to listen to it. For people that aren’t worship leaders, I think it’s extremely beneficial, as it de-mystifies the prophetic and gives very practical advice on how to participate with the Spirit. One aspect of the prayer room that I love is the openness the worship leaders have to listening to the Holy Spirit and letting Him move as He pleases. It’s edifying to all.
Misty Edwards – Fling Wide – The Lord has been ministering to me as I’ve sought to minister to Him with this album. A favorite!
Bible Gateway Audio Bibles - I tend to get migraines in my first trimester, and I’ve already had two. I need it to be completely dark,, which severely limits any activity. Also, sometimes the nausea makes it extremely difficult to read, so I’ve been listening to the Bible online instead. (Somewhere we have mp3s, but I don’t know where they are!)