Negative is the New Rude

Use to be, if you wanted to be rude to someone all you had to do was drop an F-bomb or let a few S#$@ out, and you were branded.  That kind of language was reserved for the crass and construction worker.  

Today I can't get through the day without hearing it - a lot!  It isn't rude anymore.  Oh, I agree that it a lousy way to express yourself.  But cursing isn't as rude as it use to be.  (And for the record, no I don't believe it belongs in the pulpit or the classroom either.)  

"Whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles" (Proverbs 21:23).  

So what is the new rude?  Let me preface this by saying I don't have any research to back my opinion up.  As far as I know, no one has done any work on this.  But I can tell you from personal experience, if I am negative, I am rude.  

This is primarily due to the overemphasis of our culture to "get along" and make sure no one "feels" rejected.  The idea looks good on paper, but it can never work.  

If two people are up for one promotion, someone is going to be rejected. 
If someone breaks the law, the police are going to take them to jail.  
If a student doesn't do their homework, they are going to get a less than acceptable grade. 

For some of you, I know that you're thinking - rightly so!  

But because we are so focused on pleasing everyone we have become a society that can please no one.  

Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

That's why preaching and witnessing that places emphasis on sin and its reward doesn't work. It's falling on deaf ears.  So what can you do? 

Build a positive friendship that earns the privilege, to tell the truth.  

Ephesians 4:15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ,

People want to know the truth, but they want to be accepted too.  Negative says, "I'm stupid, a loser, an incompetent human being." Earn the right to speak into someone's life so when you have the hard conversations they know you don't think they are an idiot.  I honestly believe we would grow more church and win more people that way. 

PRAY:  Dear Jesus, help me to build positive relationships that can have honest conversations about You.  AMEN