Monday, December 24, 2007

LIFE: What are we doing to one another!

Just because a thing is assigned a particular name doesn't mean it will absolutely function according to that name. For example, calling a thing a "house" plant doesn't mean it will thrive, or even survive, in every house; especially flowering houseplants.

All plants, at least all flowering plants, require certain essential things in order to thrive and survive: sunlight, carbon-dioxide, moisture, nutrition.

All over the world, there are places where houseplants will not thrive or survive, their environment is hostile to them, especially the outdoors. If there is a lack of life-supporting essentials, this too will stifle and thwart the well-being of a plant. We now know the absence of an unseen intangible (tenderness perhaps, some might say love; I'd say support and encouragement) will also affect a plant's quality of life.

Simple calling a person (or yourself) a Christian won't in and of itself insure thriving or even surviving under all conditions;
a houseplant left outside will die; a houseplant deprived of nourishment and care will also die, even though inside the house.

On the one hand, we tend to project an unattainable standard upon those called "Christian," sort of recreating them in our own image, insisting they meet our expectations just because they are called Christian.

On the other hand, we tend to knowingly place ourselves in
environments hostile to our well-being. This ought not be!

Like houseplants, Christians need a particular kind of light and moisture, a special diet, supporting encouragement and fellowship (prayer and koinonia), as well as a manageable environment. Struggle (sometimes stunting or even death) comes from the absence of these growth essentials. We
all need to mindful of our own needs and the needs of others if we expect growth in ourselves or them.

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