At times I watch the show “Real Time with Bill Maher.” I like to listen to the political debate and try to understand the other sides of arguments, particularly as it relates to our culture. Bill Maher is a comedian, and he can bring humor to many situations. However, he is not a friend of Christianity, nor of most religions, and he makes fun of religion often. I disagree with him on most of his points about religion, but I have to side with him on a recent discussion he had about Christians.
Maher cited a story about a “tip” that was left for a server. It wasn’t money, but a piece of paper that said “Some things are better than money…like your eternal salvation, that was bought and paid for by Jesus going to the cross.” While I believe that the people that left this “tip” had good intentions in their quest to tell people about Jesus and the promise of eternal life, do they really think someone who had no knowledge of salvation will be receptive to the message after they are shown this kind of rudeness?
I’ve also heard stories about homosexual waiters who were left notes berating them for their sexual choices — all in the name of “Christian charity” — rather than tips. Regardless of whether or not you agree with that lifestyle, is that really going to bring a person to Jesus?
It also reminds me of a situation that arose in my financial planning business. A couple was developing their estate plan and was considering writing their son out of the will. This son had no interest in their faith, drank too much in their opinion, and caroused around. The parents felt that their son would waste the inheritance on sinful behavior and they wanted to give it to their other children, who shared their faith. The question was asked, “How likely do you think your son would be to come to a faith in Jesus Christ if you leave everything to his siblings?” The answer was clear and the inheritance was divided among all the children.
One of my favorite quotes from Andy Andrews is, “You know, I’ve always thought more people would want to go to heaven if they weren’t scared it would be like church when they got there.” If we are to fulfill the Great Commission and make more disciples, we have to behave like someone that others would want to be like. We have to have something unbelievers want. We have to look different in a good way. We want to be known for what we are for, rather than what we are against.
Like I stated earlier, I am surprised that I stand on the side of Bill Maher on a topic, but I have to say the way the servers were treated saddened me. Do our actions show that we are good stewards of our money, time, and love, or do they prove that we are being stingy with all that God has given us? Do our actions show that we truly love others the way that God has loved us?
Kristi L. Andersen is the principal of Kristi L. Financial Partners, LLC. (www.KristiLAndersen.com) Securities offered through and Registered Representative of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC. Some Advisory services offered through AdvisorNet Financial. Cetera is under separate ownership from any other named entity.