Someone asked me what I thought about the Machine Gun Preacher, Sam Childers, the former motorcycle gang member, now a Christian, who leads armed attacks to rescue children in Sudan. Is it right to kill people to rescue others? Is he doing a good thing or just using the methods of the world to try to accomplish God’s goals? He has even come under fire from people in the area where he is trying to help children.
So is Sam a hero or a villain? Saint or another misguided follower of the Prince of Peace?
My opinion is ….. drum roll, please … I am glad I do not have to have an opinion. Sam is not working for me. He is not my servant, he is the Lord’s.
Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
Why is it we think we have to have an opinion on everything no matter how ignorant we are of the topic? Worse yet, why is it our opinion is always right? There is not a single opinion I hold or you hold that is not the correct one. (Because if we thought our opinion was wrong we would change it.)
Opinions are like navels. Everyone has one. They aren’t of much value and it is usually wise to not go around showing it to everyone.
I look at it like this. I will not have to give account to God for anything Sam is doing unless … unless I choose to judge him. Then I will give account to God for my judgment of him. The list of things I have already got to give account for is long enough. Why add Sam to my list?
I have discovered I have never had anything I did not say come back to haunt me. How much trouble could we avoid if we simply kept silent more? Could your life be happier and smoother, and less to talk to God about later, if you followed the advice of Will Rogers who said, “Never miss a good chance to shut up.”
Let’s hear it for … silence.
1 Thessalonians 4:11-12
Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.
Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue.
We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check.