By Anita Mondragon

For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. –Romans 10:23

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of extortion and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also. “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.-Matthew 23:25-28

As most of you know, I am a country girl-born and raised on a farm in Kansas.  So…what does that have to do with anything you may ask? Well, for me, it’s a disclaimer.

Most country folks don’t beat around the bush.  We are straight shooters and tell things the way we see them.  We can’t stand liars. We hate fake, and we don’t play games. Truth is of the upmost importance to us.  I don’t mean to offend people by speaking the TRUTH, but that is usually what happens.

My daddy was also born and raised on a farm in Kansas.  He was a Baptist preacher for over forty years, and many of his illustrations were based on his experiences while on the farm.  They were simple and down to earth so you couldn’t miss the point he was trying to make.

I remember one in particular.  He said, “If you throw a rock into a pen full of pigs, you can bet your bottom dollar that the one that squeals…is the one that got hit!”

You’re probably really confused now!  But don’t be! I’m just laying the ground work for the following.

You see, many times we get offended at undiluted preaching.  We’d rather have our ears tickled, have smoke blown up our skirts, be lauded to the skies for our outstanding service, be held in high  regard for our position as leaders/laypeople/volunteers …but God forbid someone call us on the carpet and point out OUR faults! 

 Some of us even get angry when our friends point out some discrepancies in our Spiritual walk with God.  We say we want the TRUTH…we say we love the TRUTH…and we’re quick to share TRUTH with others regarding their sins and short-comings…but when it is presented to us, and we are guilty, we aren’t very quick to own up to anything.  But remember this:

Truth hurts to heal…fiction tickles to destroy!

So my question to you is this….  When a “rock” from the pulpit hits you between the eyes, do you squeal and say “ouch!” and then examine yourself?  Or do you make excuses and blame others for YOUR actions?  

When a “rock” thrown by a friend or loved one to get your attention hits you, do you consider that they may be on to something and then pray that God will show you your short-comings?  Or do you brush it off, and again turn to their sins to take the focus off of yourself?


I’d rather take the hit from the pulpit and from my friends and loved ones…squeal in pain, and see my guilt NOW, while I can ask for forgiveness and change; better that, than to stand before God in my filthy rags of self -righteousness with no chance to repent or change, then see the disappointment in His eyes!

You see, our self-righteous attitude disappoints other Believers around us and we become a stumbling block to their growth and walk with the Lord.  And even worse, our testimony to the lost is destroyed. We think we’re pulling the wool over their eyes, but its 100 percent cotton. They see right through us!  Instead of seeing Jesus, and finding salvation, they see lies and deception. They see back-stabbers and connivers…lovers of SELF, rather than God.  

But God says…

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.-2 Chronicles 7:14

It’s that simple! He is ready to change us, but are WE willing?

Anita Mondragon

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