We have all done it. I am sure you have maybe even this morning or in the past few days. You find a cool meme or an inspirational quote and you like it or you share it on social media. These sayings seem to highlight a bit of our personality or our beliefs. Deep down we may even relate to that person or we even have a desire to be associated with that person’s level of intellect. I shared a quote yesterday on my personal Facebook page. I was reading a book about Dietrich Bonhoeffer and decided to look up some of his well known quotes.
After posting one, I felt more intellectually sound and a bit cooler, right? But then some thoughts occurred to me…what do I know about his character? What do I know about the fruit of his life? Did he even say what I posted? Did it match up to what I understood about his life and his faith? By posting this to my page, I was associating myself with his beliefs and his values. Shew, that’s a lot to ponder considering it is only a quote on Facebook.
Like I said, we do it all the time and many times without giving it a second thought because what we are posting is temporal and superficial. It makes us feel better about ourselves without owning any responsibility. We recycle someone else’s revelation while never being challenged to discover our own revelation. When was the last time you saw one of your own personal quotes being shared by someone who was genuinely changed by your words?
We feel wiser about posting things or quoting thoughts and all the while, we are never changed for the better by what we just shared or quoted. Meanwhile we hitch our belief wagon to individuals, many times not knowing the fruit of their lives or if they even said it and by doing so, we are guilty by association. We includes me, so don’t get offended. I am merely making an observation and challenging my own conduct as well.
You will know them by their fruit
Jesus tells us in His Word that you will know people by their fruit (Mark 7). Everyone bears fruit in their lives. Take a look at the quote at the beginning of this post. On the surface it sounds powerful and true. We could spin it in different directions regarding our faith…we won’t be cheated out of our God given rights as children of God…we are honorable and we will fight for God and stand for righteousness…blah, blah, blah.
It sounds good, but who said it? Well, it must be someone great…someone with great character and since this person mentioned being a Christian, he/she must have exemplary values. Can you tell I am setting you up with my sarcasm?
“Man, I want to post this! I don’t care who said it, it sounds cool. Forget all of that other stuff about fruit and associating with someone’s character. You are going too far with this“, you may be thinking. I do not believe that I am because we do need to know who we are associating ourselves with and we need to know whose fruit we are bringing into the orchard of our lives.
So the next time you have the desire to post a quote or meme, take the time first to examine the fruit of their life and their beliefs if possible and if their life matches up with their confession, then meditate on it and ask God to challenge you with their revelation and to change you for His glory. We need to guard the gates to our spirit with more precision and discernment from Holy Spirit. Oh, by the way, that quote at the beginning is in fact by a well known historical figure. His name was Adolf Hitler.