Monday, March 28, 2011

I am so offended

I remember when I was a teenager, hearing a man talk about how he felt he was being drawn to God.  He had a new desire to learn more about God, to learn what faith in Him was. 

This man said he was invited to church by a friend and the preacher at this church was the exact type of Christian that had driven this man away from church, faith and God.  He was loud, flamboyant, waved his arms around and shouted, "Hallelujah!" every other word it seemed.  This man decided after attending one service that he would not be back to this church and maybe he should rethink this desire for God.

Funniest thing though. . . he was drawn back to hear this man preach a week or so later.  He couldn't explain what drew him to go again. . . he just knew he had to be there.  This preacher did all the same offensive things and the man sat in his chair growing more and more frustrated and annoyed.

"Why would God, if there is a God, use this man who so obviously annoys me?  Does God not want me?" 

But as this preacher continued to speak, God softened the heart of this man.  He opened his ears to hear what God was saying through this man, regardless of the style of delivery.  This man ended up coming to a faith in Christ through this preacher. 

Here is what gets me about this story.  The man, who is now a pastor himself, still dislikes the style of preaching that is loud, flamboyant, and "Hallelujahs" every other word.  He even admitted that he still has a hard time listening to the preacher who led him to Christ preach.  He would rather do many things than listen to someone like that. 

But, he said (and I am paraphrasing), "I learned to be open to whatever God has for me, regardless of the form or vessel it comes in.  I have learned that I can be offended by someone or something and God can and will still use that."

I have thought of this so often over the years and again recently as I have been in some situations where I am just put off by someone's remarks, attitude or style.  I remind myself that God is still God and he uses any willing vessel (even the annoying ones) to accomplish His purpose.  My job is to be open and willing to listen.

1 comment:

Jon Stem said...

Great post, Christy!

It's amazing how God can speak to us through so many different situations in life - whether we are annoyed by them or not! :)

God's word doesn't return void, even when delivered through a style that may not be everyone's favorite.

Thanks for sharing!