Billy's Blog
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October 22, 2015, 9:43 AM

Choose The Best

I get a lot of questions about what people should do. I've got some pretty good questions from working with youth and from all ages, actually.  

Can I get a tattoo? 

Is it okay for me to fight in a war?

Is it a sin to get divorced?

Do I really have to go to church to be a Christian?

Will my pets go to heaven? (yes, I've been asked that)

Some of the these questions are really difficult, especially the one about pets. Dogs and cats maybe...snakes, rats, and lizards are out! When I answer some of these questions I take people to a passage in the Bible that is so important to me. This passage challenges us in our pursuit of truth. 

"I have the right to do anything,"you say--but not everything is beneficial. "I have the right to do anything"--but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others. (1 Corinthians 10:23-24)

You have a lot of freedom to make choices. God gives us a lot of freedom. We are not bound by the law anymore, Christ fulfilled it on the cross. But we are bound by a greater law...the law of love. The law of love says that we make choices not just based on "what is allowed" but rather how can I show love to God and love to my fellow man. I want to do what is best for God, myself, and others. 

When I make decisions I don't just look to find whether what I'm considering will send me to Hell or not, but I consider what is the best thing to do. 

I love this kind of thinking. First of all, it's Christ-like. Jesus considered not just the law, but what was best in the moment. This got him in the trouble with the experts in the law, but he didn't care. Secondly, it takes away the idea of people controlling other people and forces people to consider what God wants them to do. 

Let me give you an example. I had a few young men who I had in my youth group for their junior high/high school years. Several of them were together somewhere and one of the young men called me and asked if it was okay to get a tattoo. If I want to just control them I just tell them it's wrong and they would be sinning and out of line to get a tattoo. I would love to tell them that, because my personal opinion is that tattoos are gross and permanent and usually regretted later in life. But I didn't want them to be controlled by my opinion. I told the young man my opinion, but I also told him to do what he thought was the best thing to do. I told him I did not believe that tattoos were a sin, but that he should seek to do the best thing...not just what was allowed. 

I don't even remember what they did, they probably got tattoos, but I was okay with that. I was okay as long as they sought to do the best thing in their lives. 

Sometimes it's easier for a preacher or spiritual leader just to try to control people and spew out his opinions and condemnation for going against them. But I love it when people seek to please God and serve him rather than seeking to please me. Sometimes I have the hard facts from the Bible, and sometimes I'm not sure how to answer. Regardless, I want people to always seek the best thing...not just what's allowed. 

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