I usually say what I mean. I usually assume everyone else does, too. For one, it’s just easier: “I would like the red one, please.” is a pretty simple statement. The one you want is red, you don’t want the green or blue one.
But for those who say things they don’t mean, “I would like the red one, please.” Becomes: “I don’t want the red one, but I’m not telling you if I’d like the blue one or the green one just to mess with you.”
Sometimes people are like that “just to mess with you” or “just to aggravate you” or “just to get on your nerves” or “just to get under your skin”. They get a laugh out of it. I don’t.
It’s not an easy lesson to learn. But it has helped me to see a flaw – I usually accept what people say without question – particularly in a church setting. Some of these same people seem to be honest on Sundays and dishonest the rest of the week. I can’t help but wonder if they’re actually dishonest on Sundays, too – after all, a habit like that is probably difficult to break.
I was thinking about a statement I had read awhile back – some people just don’t have the ability to not believe what people tell them. For them, the wrong kind of Christianity does them far more harm than good. You know those famous pastors who always get caught and sentenced to prison time? Do you know that even in those circumstances, they still have devoted fans who believe that they’re innocent because that’s what the pastor told them? That no amount of evidence could sway them to believe otherwise? What of the pastors that don’t get caught, who stand up on the pulpit and say: “So-and-so family has left our congregation and have been spreading malicious gossip, listening to them will damage your faith – so I implore you to have nothing to do with the unrighteous who are not among us.” Remember the cult that made the news for the sad result of how it punished one of it’s members – yeah, that’s the wrong kind of Christianity.
Sadly, the wrong kind of Christianity can be just about anywhere – anywhere a pastor is dishonest, obfuscates and twists scripture, denies to be held accountable and refuses to be transparent, where the leadership hides sinners and casts out their victims for not being wise enough to not have been sinned against. There’s really no such thing as an immunity to the wrong kind of Christianity. It can manifest itself in any church – and it gets away with being there because we all believe it isn’t – because that’s what we were told. Other churches are full of unrighteous sinners, constantly back-stabbing and cheating one another – but this slice of heaven, this haven of peace and God’s favor is utterly perfect – that’s where it thrives best. Nobody who is imperfect six days out of the week will always be an angel on the seventh, eventually their true colors will show – and I wouldn’t lie about a thing like that.