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Thursday, November 12, 2015

How to Build God's Kingdom: Beyond Negativity and Criticism

There's a great weakness in the strategy and tactics of Christians when attempting to make a difference in this world.

It's similar to the verse in Jeremiah 1:10 where he is given part of his assignment by God.

Jeremiah 1:10

See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.

Many of us hear the first four parts of that verse first, emphasizing rooting out, pulling down, destroying and throwing down. This is the necessary but negative side of the equation. It is very legitimate and needs to be done, but it has little value if the building and planting part isn't added.

My observations over the years are those that offer the negative side of dealing with issues contrary to the kingdom of God, do okay with telling people what they shouldn't do, but have no positive alternatives to offer to show them what they can or should do.

I want to make this clear. Negativity and criticism have their place when attacking evil that needs to be dealt with. If that isn't done first and rooted out, offering an alternative is meaningless. How can you build on a faulty foundation? The ground has to be dug up and cleared in order to provide a platform to build in someones life, or an alternative way of doing things, such as educating children, business, health, any one of hundreds of categories of life.

We need to offer an alternative

The point isn't constructive criticism and attacking the roots of evil and wrongdoing is bad, the point is it's inadequate by itself. There needs to be positive alternatives in order to have a long-term, sustainable impact.

On the other hand, those that only offer a positive alternative without rooting out that which needs to be removed, end up having a foundation that will crumble and a work in the lives of other containing mixture; something that is an abomination to God.

It also has little teeth in it, as it tends to include sentimentality rather than the type of toughness that the trial of fire all or our work will undergo in order to see what it's made of.

If we root out without planting, all we have is a nice place to place a garden that is quickly overtaken with weeds and tares because there was nothing to replace it. You get the idea.

So when we attempt to expand God's kingdom on earth, as it relates to strategy, we need to develop a positive alternative in order to give people guidance. It may not be the exact path for them, but it will get them going in the right direction.

Even if you primarily like to give little shots and missiles on social media outlets, put together your tearing down stuff and include with it the building up alternative. It doesn't have to be long, but you can have a bunch of these related to specific topics ready to copy and paste at a moments notice.

Not only does this give people answers, but it can shut our enemies mouths as they try to figure out how to undermine positive alternatives.

You can do this no matter what your chosen area of expanding the kingdom of God on earth is. Since we should be specialists in our war on humanism, it means we'll eventually be experts that can quickly offer both sides of meaningful change: tearing down and building up. One without the other will result in failure and frustration.

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