Christianity, Creator, Uncategorized

How to respond to those who don’t believe

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Do you live in a Christian bubble?

I do. That’s not necessarily a good thing.

My close friends are believers.

I write about God all the time.

I teach Bible studies, and I work for a Christian writing group.

I live in the South! That speaks for itself. There’s a church on every corner.

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But God has given me the opportunity to write for a religion publication that covers all religions. I’m one of their “Christian” writers for WilmingtonFAVS. The other writers represent other faiths: Buddhist, Humanist, Hindu, Pagan, Aetheist, Jewish…

As painful as it is at times to write with this plethora of religion writers, it often reminds me of why I believe what I believe.

The other day, our Humanist writer explained his belief system. Once Methodist now Humanist, he shared  the American Humanist Association’s definition:

“a rational philosophy informed by science, inspired by art, and motivated by compassion. Affirming the dignity of each human being, it supports liberty and opportunity consonant with social and planetary responsibility. Free of theism and other supernatural beliefs, humanism thus derives the goals of life from human need and interest rather than from theological abstractions, and asserts that humanity must take responsibility for its own destiny.”

I found his beliefs rather intriguing, some even close to Christianity. But this belief system allows no hope of eternal life, and they maintain that we must make our own destiny. Both of these precepts grieve my spirit.

When my colleague writes about Christianity, bitterness etches every word. I have a feeling that somewhere down the line he was hurt deeply by a Christian or many Christians. I confess my own offenses rise when I read his opinions, and I find myself struggling in my response. I want to fight back with words.

Sometimes I do.

But the truth is, God loves this man.

And so should I.

No matter how offensive.

Yet, I must learn to share my faith in love. A good friend also counseled that rather than focusing on “truth” in my conversations with my colleague, I should speak words of life.

I pray I can demonstrate love and speak life to this man and others who do not share my beliefs.

I pray all of us who believe will. For only love changes things.

Our response must be love.

How do you respond to attacks on Christianity?

With Joy,

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“But in your hearts always set Christ apart as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” (1 Peter 3:15)

I’ve linked up with Christianmommy Blogger! Check them out their Fellowship Friday. Good stuff!

 

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8 thoughts on “How to respond to those who don’t believe

  1. I’ve learned it’s important not to be reactive when in the midst of a discussion with a non-believer. But like Kay said in the previous post, “always in love.” Recently a non-believer acquaintance of mine, told me she liked me and thought I was a “good person.” I had accompanied her to a Dr.’s appointment for some testing and a series of x-rays. I didn’t talk much, I was simply there and available as a friend. Afterward, I took out to lunch. That meant the world to her, as I had been praying on how to be a witness. It was in that noisy Food Court at the mall where she told me I was a good person. Sometimes it’s simply the outward and non-verbal expressions of our faith that say the most.

    1. Yes Beth! Thank you so much for sharing your story. In my case with my fellow writer, I do have to use words. He asked for comments on his articles. But I need to also demonstrate love to him. Looking forward to our next FAVS pot luck. 🙂

      1. Andy, you are such a gracious individual. More than that, Jesus shines through you. Your smile and laugh are infectious! Sooner or later those unbelievers in your path will notice you have SOMETHING. The Word says for us to be prepared to give an answer in season and out of season. Whether an unbeliever likes our answer or not, we must be prepared to give them one. After all, we can agree to disagree while respecting each other’s beliefs.

  2. Andy,
    Gentleness and respect are so hard to use when we disagree. I am amazed as I read about today’s persecuted Christians. They say the same as you, that respect is so important when speaking with their persecutors. And they’re living it! They must know.

    1. Thank you for your thoughts, Sondra. We feel like we are persecuted, but we really aren’t, are we? Not like the rest of the world. Thank you for that reminder to pray for those who face physical threat every day.

  3. Always in His love – absolutely. And, easier said than done, for sure. It starts with receiving more and more of His amazing love for us, and letting His love overflow from there. Good post, Andy.

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