Use of words on social media can build or destroy. Think before pressing the send button.
Posted this in a blog couple of years ago. Would appreciate your feedback.
"I'm a killer", said a friend of mine describing a circumstance where an angry person was becoming more intense with his misunderstanding of the role my friend played in the eventual demise of his marriage. "You don't know me, I'm a killer," my friend retorted. I wasn't there, but I think it's safe to say that the discussion or the irritating accusations soon subsided into more civil conversation. What I learned from this individual was, that one who has murdered, most times, will acknowledge that the next moment of intensity will move killing to the front of possible options for solving a threatening situation.
The New York Times Opinion section July 4,1991 from a June L. Aulick, in her response to the Topic of the Day:" Death Penalty Speaks Society's Moral Outrage: To Murder Again," brought out this passionate response: 'Murderers -- Jack Henry Abbott, freed from prison, shortly thereafter he killed again.'
"Whatever inner drive causes this behavior, nobody knows. But one convict aware of his tendency, said on television, 'I know that if I am let out of prison, I will kill again', Let's forget costs of executions, and give thought to the cost in human welfare."
This publicly shared opinion is deeply carried by many a church villager. The quiet but often acted out belief that once an evil action is done, the evil doer cannot really get rid of the drive to do it again. Much documented research reveals that the root cause of one who murders, is anger. Simply put, unresolved and cultivated anger will eventually lead to destruction of another person's life. Whether out of revenge, bitterness, or power to control, anger unchecked, will cause humans to do some crazy things, the ultimate to take a life. Murder has come to church and propped itself on the front pew. It hangs out with the deacons, elders, and even the pastor of the flock. We don't see people being shot or beaten to death within the holy confines of the sanctuary, but the tongue can certainly ruin and devastate a saint or sinner for that matter.
"I'm a killer" is not just the self description of one who has taken the life of another. It has become the description of angry church goers. Their weapon of destruction today? Cyber space. No longer do self proclaimed Christians have to embarrass one in person; or confront an adversary on the phone or in the pastor's study. An office, home, library will do, so long as there is a computer innocently awaiting the fingers of religious assassins, controlled by bitter rage toward another human being.The combination can be deadly. A saint can let it fly becoming trigger happy, not with the hard material of mass destruction; but with one push of the send button, and can murder another humans' reputation, character, and opportunity to serve community or church. Murder of the ugliest kind, is fueled by intent and premeditation.
Heaven sees, but deeper still Heaven knows the motive. Once again, like most murderers of physical life, when you have killed once, it's easy to do it again. Good people can take justice into their own hands and "fix" a person or a situation by being "real and open about truth." But in the end when every one's life has moved on from the shock of a situation, in the wake lies a corpse. A child of God who has made mistakes and needs forgiveness and restoration, has been placed in a coffin of ridicule and shame, never to rise again. The murder takes place with an attempt to be inconspicuous. Like the powerful, called and appointed leader, Moses in the book of exodus. He describes himself when faced with an Egyptian in an altercation with one of his people, as having "looked this way and that way," before killing and burying the Egyptian. He sought to kill secretly. It's easy to look this way and that way when in the comfort of your room and then secretly press send. And a successful erasing of one who has disappointed you or caused you stress and frustration has been accomplished.
Or has it? God has been watching all along. He is never about destroying a sinner, but providing an opportunity for redemption. Galatians 6:1 points out that if a brother is caught in a fault or sin, "ye which are spiritual restore him".... A vibrant church acknowledges sin, but spiritually sets out to restore the sinner.
Anger harbored, lodges itself in the mind and like a growing tumor, brings corrosion to its host. A church goer filled with anger unchecked, will filter everything about life through the dulling eyes of rage. Ministry becomes nearly impossible, and is less spiritually impacting by an angry saint. Fellowship is altered. Too often, many marriages find one partner attempting to move forward on a foundation of unforgiveness, but waiting to spring hatred by any means necessary til the object (spouse) of their rage is completely destroyed.
Matthew 5:19-22 reflects Jesus attitude about justifying our rage to the point of killing another person: "Trivialize even the smallest item in God's law and you will only have trivialized yourself. But take it seriously, show the way for others, and you will find honor in the kingdom.
Unless you do far better than the Pharisees in the matters of right living, you won't know the first thing about entering the kingdom...
You're familiar with the command to the ancients, 'Do not murder', I'm telling you that anyone who is so much as angry with a brother or sister is guilty of murder. Carelessly call a brother 'idiot' and you just might find yourself hauled into court. Thoughtlessly yell 'stupid' at a sister and you are on the brink of hellfire. The simple moral fact is that words kill"
The appeal in the village today is for the reader to address personal anger. Check and see if you are consumed with the suffering of those who have caused you pain. Ask God for His character which hates sin but loves the sinner. Erase the cyber messages aimed to prove you're right by pointing out the evils of others. Remember that a day will come when you will cause pain to others, and the train of cyber murder will recklessly head to your own house. Place the people who have caused the deep hurts at the top of your prayer list; asking God to give you the disposition of Christ while looking down from the cross on his stabbers and mockers, interceding for their salvation. Finally, pray that God removes the anger so that you can be used by him in a mighty way. Turn cyber murder into cyber restoration and witnessing to the glory of God in your life. The village will rid itself of evil doers and be populated by kingdom seekers.