Pride and Priorities

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How do we prioritize our lives such that souls take precedence over all else?

It’s a simple question that can have such a difficult solution associated with it. But it doesn’t have to be. The thought we must have for every action in our lives is fairly simple, when it comes right down to it: “Is this action/event/duty/task one that will directly or indirectly affect my ability to reach souls who need the Church’s teachings?” If we apply this thought to every action, boiled down to such simplicity, the answer becomes much more clear. However, we have to be careful that pride doesn’t creep in and we assume everything we do is “for the good of the souls”.

One of the primary examples I can think of right away is that of social media. All too often, I have seen self-proclaimed Christians behaving in a very un-Christ-like manner. They (wrongfully) believe their comments on a particular post/article/subject are “helpful” to Christians and non-Christians alike, when truthfully those words are better left un-typed. Unfortunately, typing words does not seem to have the same impact that speaking does, and people who normally would not say such hateful things aloud have no qualms commenting away and spewing vitriol. We have to now be careful of both our tongues AND our thumbs. I believe that hands down, one of the best ways to reach souls is to share, tweet, comment, and post LESS rather than MORE. Think of this: which “friend” do you pay more attention to- the one who constantly posts something political, or the one who rarely does? I can definitely say in my case it is the latter. Somehow, their thoughts are given more weight than my friend who consistently shares political posts and articles, even if I agree with the vocal friend.

This sentiment reminds me of a passage in 1 Timothy, 1:6-7: “Some people have missed the way to these things and turned to empty speculation, trying to be teachers of the Law; but they understand neither the words they use nor the matters about which they make such strong assertions.” If you want my personal take on this passage as it relates to social media, here it is: keep your words to yourself, lest you sound like a fool. Does this mean we shouldn’t stand up for what we know to be right? Absolutely not! But it does mean that you should thoroughly examine your intentions before ever posting on social media. As silly as it is, I like to use the kindergarten method- T.H.I.N.K. Is what you are about to say:


Be sure to TASTE your WORDS before you SPIT them out.

I know many of us are sick of feeling that we have to walk on eggshells for fear of offending someone. I know most of us just want some truth out there, even if it’s ugly or not “politically correct”. This desire for something real instead of the “special snowflake syndrome” we have seen is understandable, and in my humble opinion, it is this desire that has played a massive role in what we have seen unfold in our country recently. However, what I’m specifically talking about is letting pride get in the way of our message. When you let pride season your words, nothing good can come from this. Don’t assume that just because they are YOUR words that they matter so much that they MUST be spoken (or read).

Remember my example of the less vocal friend? Think of this: when your friend who is always quiet in conversations speaks out, do you not listen more intently? I do. This is not a case of the squeaky wheel gets the oil. Instead, the person who is typically quiet receives more attention to their words because they make each word count. THIS is how we should be. Every word issued from our mouths (or our fingers) should carry weight, and not just because we think or say they should. They should hold their own, because we are not the type to take to complaining every time something we don’t like occurs. They should be heavy with meaning, but gentle as they are spoken or read. This does not mean we should in any way temper the truth or stray from it; but be sure to temper your temper.

So the next time you find yourself about to post an important message, ask yourself to T.H.I.N.K. Ask if the words you write are going to directly or indirectly influence your ability to win souls- then ask yourself if that influence will be positive or negative. Remember, words left unspoken can’t be misunderstood.