Thursday, January 08, 2009

Spoiled Brat Christians

2 Timothy 3:1-2: "But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves…"
Romans 12:3: "For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you."

The property management business often reveals the true character of our tenants. We have dealt with domestic violence, terrorist threats, suicide attempts, and suicide; some days we see all joy and celebrations. In our business we can see the full scale and range of human emotions.

We manage properties for Christian organizations. We also manage multi-tenant properties that have Christian organizations as tenants.

In our company, we have employees with a mix of faiths. One day we were discussing bothersome, irksome, unhappy tenants. One employee said that the Christian organizations have more than the usual number of people who are complainers and prima donnas (for example: requiring special parking spots next to the building, etc.). If we plow the parking lot in the morning and additional snow occurs during the day, one Christian organization wants us to clear the snow next to their cars in the parking lot. No one else has ever made this request. They pay extra for “this service” but it angers me when I envision people giving sacrificially to these prima donnas.

I asked some of our employees why they thought these Christian organizations and Christian people act this way. One man, who grew up poor on the south side of Chicago, had a most interesting comment. He said most of the people that work in these organizations are Christian. They grew up Christian, had two parents, stable homes with two incomes, stable finances, and lived in stable slightly up-scale communities. Most have college educations and most have been blessed but along the way “they have become spoiled brats” (his words). His insight is very interesting.

If we accept his analysis, God has blessed us as Christians, and yes, he has but, along the way, we have served ourselves rather than the Lord and other people. We have become Christian narcissists not humble, willing and obedient servants of Christ. I hope this will not be the epithet of the Christians of this age. In some ways, I must agree with his ideas about this. In so many ways I do not want it to be true. Any wonder why Christians are losing their influence?


"Gallup: Americans See Religious Influence Waning

Religion News Service reports that two-thirds of Americans think religion is losing its influence on U.S. life. This shows a sharp jump from just three years ago when Americans were nearly evenly split on the question, according to a new Gallup Poll. Sixty-seven percent of Americans think religious influence is waning while just 27 percent say it is increasing. That perspective demonstrates a continuing downward trend, Gallup said. But the 27 percent figure is still higher than the record low, set in a 1970 poll, when just 14 percent of Americans thought religion was increasing in influence. The latest poll also finds that the percentage of Americans believing that religion "can answer all or most of today's problems" has reached an all-time low."


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