Tuesday, February 12, 2013

A Matter of Principles

I read about a book, “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Billy Graham & Me,” and was struck by a line from Patrina’s Pencil:
Regardless of your familiarity with Mr. Graham or your identification with his message, more important than the person are the transferable principles by which he lives his life.
Did we ever think of our principles as being ‘transferable?’ A step further, do we know our principles – and do we want them to be transferable?

Principles?  You know, those  fundamental truths that serves as the foundation of our beliefs and behavior, our chain of reasoning.

Do you know yours? Could you write down your strongest principle – then explain why it is your strongest principle?

Billy Graham knew his, and shared them with the world. They were interesting enough to be listened to by world leaders. In a Christianity Today interview two years ago, Mr. Graham was asked if he would do things differently. Part of his answer included those world leaders:
I also would have steered clear of politics. I'm grateful for the opportunities God gave me to minister to people in high places; people in power have spiritual and personal needs like everyone else, and often they have no one to talk to. But looking back I know I sometimes crossed the line, and I wouldn't do that now.
Our job as Christians is not to change the culture of our world through politics. Our job, as outlined by Jesus:

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Matthew 28:19-20 KJV)

That’s foundational. There’s no imposition there. There’s no indication of force or coercion, no restrictions given for the hearer. Teach, and He’ll be with us. So, what do we teach? The words of God.

Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me. These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. (John 14:23-26 KJV)

When we love God, He will teach us and bring His things to our memory. When we hate, we forget what we’ve been taught and our foundational principles crumble, are not seen, are not transferable.

We do need to determine within ourselves the principles that make up our lives – and determine if those are the principles we wish to transfer, simply because our actions transfer our principles to our loved ones, our acquaintances and to every person we meet along our life’s journey. If they are not what we wish, we need to solidify our foundation and prepare the correct transfers.

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Thank you for taking time to read and comment on the blog. Comments should take into consideration this verse: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8 KJV)