I have often been mesmerized by the abundance of information that is passed around this world via all kinds of social mediums and technology and the old fashioned “word of mouth”. As a pastor, I absolutely LOVE the ability of all these avenues in passing along important info.  I am constantly looking for ways to share information as it relates to our church and the Kingdom of God. However, if you ask Tricia, there are times when I just don’t want to be “part of the conversation” in the passing of some information.

TRUTH MATTERS! Any story presented can certainly appear as truth UNTIL it is checked for the facts. Unfortunately, many leaders of our country do not adhere to this kind of philosophy or belief. One of the big problems I see is the completed disregard for CONTEXT. With the presidential election having just occurred, we can easily find all kinds of examples to support this fact. You know…a candidate will take one thing, just ONE THING out of a whole speech and form a particular spin on it to make it appear as though the opposing candidate ascribes to a policy that is completely contradictory to the REAL policies they hold dear…taking what they said completely out of context.

At the same time, God and His Word have gotten a bad rap because many have taken one particular scripture and built an entire religion and belief system around it while at the same time, ignoring every other scripture reference that is pertinent to defining the complete picture of what God and His Word say. I see 2 issues here: 1) the person(s) creating a model around one scripture are acting on incomplete information and 2) when others see this kind of stupidity and form an opinion that all Christians are just like that, they too have an incomplete view of what it truly means to be a Christian. Yet, I pause…am I the perfect example of Christianity? Absolutely not. And I pray no one looks at only my life and judges every other Christian solely upon my life. In the same way, I hope that I am not judged by the actions and lifestyle of another. I am constantly striving to have a greater understanding of God’s Words and His ways. I challenge you to do the same thing…not forming any opinion or belief system without fully searching what the entire story line says or what the entire Word of God declares.

I Thessalonians 5:20-21 provides instructions to “check it out” before you respond and act upon information you receive, even prophecy and the message from the preacher. Check it out against the Word of God.

Have you ever just taken the word of one person about a situation, acted emotionally in response to what they told you, only to find out at a later time that the individual did not have ALL the facts, or intentionally left out some facts? Wow, what a let-down! Be wise. Check it out before you commit to believing the information.

I truly believe that the Bible is ultimate authority in every area of our lives. You can choose to believe it is a confusing and contradicting and incomplete book of stories if you want to, but “judging the book by its cover” is NOT a reason to discredit the validity of such an important and divinely inspired word. Confusion, assumed contradictions and incompleteness are completely undone when we truly check it out and digest every word that is written (Matthew 4:4). With this in mind, I believe we should check the words we speak, the places we go, and the ways we live through the filter of the Word of God.

The part of the conversation that I do not want to be included in is one that depicts only a few statements (true or false) that really bring no clarity at all to any situation. I challenge you to check everything in your life by the Word of God.