What Does a “Spiritual Person” Look Like?

Had a charismatic, Christian friend… He really liked what was showy and dramatic in Christianity.  He loved seeing the manifestations of the Spirit like tongues, interpretations, prophetic utterances, signs and wonders… It was evident that he thought those who displayed those things a lot were very “spiritual” people (in fact he said so)… He was very much into those things himself (and you could tell by listening to him and watching him that he wanted others to think that he was very “spiritual.”)  However…

When he was in a restaurant he could be very demanding of the waitress or waiter and embarrass you.  Had a bit of a short fuse if you crossed Him up.  His opinions were always the right ones and he seemed to delight in “showing you up” in front of others.  When decisions had to be made it “was his way or the highway” (I’ve seen him stalk out of a business meeting when he disagreed with something… didn’t slam the door, but came close).  A bit intolerant of others weaknesses and bigoted.  Kinda liked to get even if someone did him wrong… When he was really “ticked off” he could “cuss” like an ol’ sailor… Did I say he thought of himself as a “spiritual person”?

Thought of him this morning as I read this passage in the Bible…

“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.  And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.  If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 

“Love never ends!  As for prophecies – they will pass away; as for tongues – they will cease; as for knowledge – it will pass away… So now faith, hope, and love abide – these three – but the great of these is love!” (from 1 Corinthians 13 ESV)

Yup, when I read that this morning I thought of my friend who wanted to be thought of as “spiritual” … Then I thought about me…

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