An Ounce of Humor Accomplishes More Than a Pound of Wrath
How would you respond to rebuke? Or criticism? Or any negative attack that is directed at you personally and requires a response? It is certainly a precarious situation to be in. Especially if you are hosting a live television program. You are completely defenseless and vulnerable, not knowing who or what might come at you next. Taking telephone calls on the air, while being broadcast live over satellite to an entire nation causes me just a "little bit" of trepidation. Never- theless, I sit there week after week staring at a little red dot in the middle of the camera completely dependent upon God and reasonably confidant that He will not let me embarrass myself (or Him).
The majority of the viewers and callers are most encouraging and shower me with love. But then, there is that ‘one’. There is ALWAYS one. One that is determined to pull you down, knock you out and be the very instrument that keeps you humble and on your toes.
Fortunately for me, this viewer chose to e-mail me rather than humiliate me on the air. He basically wrote that he was a Christian, studying anthropology at University and stated that after watching me a dozen times, saw that the Bible, which was only intended to be a quasi-structure tool, seemed to completely control me instead. That meant that I was abandoning my free will and this was therefore a great handicap.
GLORY TO GOD -- to be criticized because my life is centered around the Word of God and to be lambasted because I use it as the final and ultimate authority regarding any and all issues is the greatest compliment I could receive. Still I got a bit out of joint because this man’s intent was not to bless but to find fault. Plus, I read this e-mail at the end of the program, in the middle of the night, at which point I had been awake for over 24 hours. I was liable to say something I might regret so I prayed for God’s wisdom.
God has a most wonderful sense of humor. Instead of reproof, He had me write this analogy: "as with a car manual, you don’t read it and then apply only the parts that suit your ideas and purposes if you want your car to run efficiently. You either accept the ‘whole’ counsel of God, or have the car sitting in your driveway, or on the side of the road, missing gas, missing oil or just with rusty spark plugs. It could be that you didn’t know how your windshield wipers work so you have stayed home every time it rains or snows, therefore spending half your life immobile. To then say that the car manual controls your life because it shows you where the switch to turn the wipers is located or shows you how to release the gas cap, or when to replace the spark plugs is a bit absurd. Simply put, if you operate your car according to the MANUFACTURER’S manual, you will have an efficient and useful vehicle allowing for a pleasant journey. Disregard the instructions and you will possibly be going nowhere, doing nothing very quickly.
There are thousands of people out there whose cars have no gas, no oil, and dead batteries and God has simply called me to point them to the MANUAL and send them to the MECHANIC so that they can have a pleasant journey and end up at the right destination, not in the ditch.
For those that don’t have a car, don’t want a car and would just rather walk, I suggest you don’t ignore the road signs, such as ‘Danger - High Voltage’ or ‘One Way’ or ‘Detour’. They are not meant to control you, just warn you of what lies ahead. Obviously, they have information which you don’t. Plus, if you’re out walking in the dark and you run into someone that says, "Look out, you’re about to walk off that steep cliff", you might consider going to get a flash light and checking it out, instead of blindly or stubbornly continuing to race toward destruction. But then again, the choice is yours, you don’t have to. It’s just a suggestion."
I know I was not the author of those words because I’m just not into cars and I was not even remotely amused by this person’s slam. Thankfully God’s character surfaced rather than my own. God’s ‘soft answer turneth away wrath’. Two weeks later this same man wrote and said that my response caused him to take a serious look at God’s Word and he has now started a Bible Studies Course so that he can have a better knowledge of the bible. I am so glad God doesn’t let me mess up --- this time anyway.
Copyright Donna Martonfi www.psalm40ministries.com