Ever have just one nerve left, and everyone seems to be jumping on it- with cleats?
I have days like that- in fact, I've had weeks like that!
As Christians we are no better than anyone else- the reason we are Christians is because we know we're not better than anyone else! And though we hold back from doing what we want to do, the sin of wanting to do something about the situation remains. At least with me.
Here are some of the things I'd love to do if I didn't restrain my sweet little Christian self:
Swat Someone With My Bible. Oh yeah! I'd just love to run around with my Bible clutched in both hands giving certain individuals a good whack upside the head. Even better? Yelling "REPENT!" at the top of my lungs. This is usually reserved for people who are Christians doing really stupid unChristian actions. It's a "Stop-pointing-out-everyone's-faults-and-notice-the-plank-in-your-own-eye-you-Doofus" kind of thing.
The Ultimate Biblical Tongue Lashing. I know they need one. I know they probably deserve it. But I'm either not the one to give it to them (because I'm not a parent, a relative or a pastor), or I can't remember the exact Scripture to back my rant. So I hold my tongue and pray that someone else does it, before I lose my Schmidt.
Binding and Gagging. We've all had one of these in church- the whiny, whimpering, wiggling child that distracts everyone in service, but the parents are completely oblivious or just as distracting trying to calm the child down instead of taking the kid out of the room. No one can hear the sermon, and the worst I can give them is a glare- if I can turn my head around like an owl.
The parents usually have a "Keep the kid quiet" fail-safe involving candy- which just sets the child off five minutes later when the sugar rush hits- and they never carry any quiet toys like soft books or stuffed animals- the toys consist of rattles, keys or even those cell phone games that go boop bip boop throughout the rest of the service. At this point I'm not sure if the kid needs binding and gagging, or the parents do.
Confiscate Any Gadget That Isn't Used For Church. Oh, I really would love to do this! There's that guy texting his friends. That lady trying to muffle her cell phone ring. The messaging beeps. The kids trying to hide the video games they're playing by sitting with friends who serve as cover as they watch her play. The bings, bongs, boops and bips of kids (and some adults!) playing Candy Crush on their phones during service.
Part of me wants to have a collection plate just for these devices before church begins so there's some peace and quiet- at least until Whiny the Human Jumping Bean shows up with her parents and the Noisy Toy Brigade. If people don't have Bible verses on those darn devices, I have a great desire to snatch it out of their hands and yank out the battery- and their ear plugs. Instead I just sing the hymns a little louder. Maybe a lot louder.
Snarkiness. Tact has never been my strongest ability, but when around others I really have to keep the snarkiness levels down to the absolute minimum. If I'm snarky to people who aren't Christians, people look down their noses at me and say things like "I thought you were a Christian." or "Is that how Christians are supposed to act?" These are the same people that berate Christians for being "holier than thou" secret sinners, yet if we actually sin, then we've fallen off of our own pedestals and should be reprimanded. You can't have it both ways, non-Christian person! Christians are sinners, but not all sinners are Christians. So there. Nyah.
As for being snarky with other Christians, I've faced many trials after letting out my snark monster. "That wasn't very Christian," I'd hear, or I'd receive and lecture about being more gentle with people. I don't remember Paul being a subtle guy, and God didn't make me into a big ball of sweetness and tact- though I have to admit I've let the snark monster out more than I should on occasion. I've gotten better, but only through a great deal of prayer and chocolate have I managed not to be as snarky as I want to be.
It isn't easy being Christian. But God isn't done with me yet. And I'm not afraid to say He's got a big job ahead of Him. I'm just glad He can handle it!