The deluge of ministerial scandals plays a major part. As I write the exact quote is in another distant office, so the gist must suffice. On top of this obvious contribution, most of the younger Christians have learned to read and in conservative Christian environments, to reason. This ability does away with the name calling that is often substituted for the lack of facts and no longer holds sway over them, and they walk away. Nothing would be accomplished by listing who did what, but from the highest echelons to the outer fringe, hypocrisy has been blatant.
While musing on this I came across a statement by the renowned Russian Anton Chekhov. Chekhov was born into a dysfunctional family of textbook 101 qualities. He grew to manhood attempting to deal with this. Tolstoy was one of his best friends, but I cannot find that Anton ever discovered a close walk with the Lord Jesus. That he was among the greatest of writers is simply a matter of fact. A statement from his early manhood gives some insight into his inner feelings:
“When my brothers and I used to stand in the middle of the church and sing the trio “May My Prayer Be Exalted” or “The Archangels’ Voice” everyone looked at us with emotion and envied our parents, but we felt like little convicts.” Anton Chekhov
Chekov’s father, a mean spirited bully, was a tyrant of a family leader and one who constantly held his wife up to brutal ridicule in the presence of the children. I am being kind.
In spite of wondering about Anton’s spiritual condition, I am compelled to believe that he was able to get over many of the abuses of his childhood, and while he was beyond doubt severally bruised internally, he learned to turn his scars into stars. Many of his characters suffered the same inner torments that he dealt with on a daily basis. He was the writer celebrity of his time, yet he, at a rather young age, took responsibility for his Mother and siblings. As a medical doctor he sought out the poor and treated them at no charge.
Suffering through a less than ideal childhood is painful to the max. But we do not have to continue the suffering throughout our entire life. Chekhov knew the truth that Ethel Water’s so often said in essence, “Any idiot can face a crisis; it's this day-to-day living that wears you out.” Anton Chekhov.
Jesus said it this way in John 10:10 “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” This promised abundant life with Jesus is daily!
Copyright © 2015 Larry Lilly
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