There are many things that come easy to people. Some are great athletes because of their genetic disposition. Some are great writers and thinkers. Some are great leaders by nature. It just comes easy to them. But the one thing all of us have in common is the ability to be cynical. No one has to teach us to be cynical or train us in some unique way. Sin causes us all, from birth, to be cynical. Granted, some are more cynical than others, but everyone is cynical in some way. How do I know that? Because the Word of God tell us that we are all sinners. (Romans 3:23) And because we are all sinners, by nature, from birth, we carry inside the ability to be cynical about lots of things. We can by cynical about our parents. We can be cynical about our jobs or our friends or our automobiles, etc. There is nothing left out of the lens of cynicism when it is on the prowl, so to speak.
Let’s define cynicism or a person who is a cynic. A cynic is, according to Webster, “a faultfinding critic”. According to my understanding, that means that a cynic is someone who is capable of looking at someone or something or some situation and finding something wrong. It is the ability to have what I call, an Eeyore spirit. You remember Eeyore. He was the donkey who was the friend of Winnie the Pooh. Eeyore had the unique ability to find something wrong with everything. No matter what was happening to the Winnie the Pooh gang, Eeyore found a way to deflate the joy by finding the worst in the situation. His famous statement was, “Oh, bother”.
But, the Lord Jesus did not come so people could be better at being cynical. He came to set people free from cynicism. Because cynicism destroys. It destroys the soul of a person, because it takes the joy out of being a child of God. It destroys because its focus is “me” centered. It looks for and longs to draw the person into their inner self and introspection, so much so, that they miss the point of their lives, if left unchecked. Cynicism, pushes the person to forget about the good things in life and to focus on the tragedy’s and the things that drain us.
But as I said, Jesus did not come for us to remain cynical. He came to give us the ability to see clearly, the joys of this life and the triumphs of this life, if we are looking. Just the other day I was out of town with my family. At one point in the day, we were in a store and I had the opportunity to speak to a young lady about her spiritual life. Actually, my wife started the conversation with her by asking if she went to church anywhere. But the young lady responded by saying, “I don’t need to go to church to worship God”. To which my wife said, “that is true”. But then my wife also said, “God wants us to be in fellowship with each other, as His children.” To that the young lady said, “I don’t go because a preacher told me that because I have tattoos, I was going to hell”. To be fair, I have learned that there are always two sides to any story. So, I would need to talk to the pastor to see if that is exactly what he said. But suppose, He did say that. The young lady took that message and made truth from it. Well, it really wasn’t truth, because even if someone tells us something, it is not true unless God actually said it, which He never did. The point is, this young lady became very cynical toward the church because of what she was told. She made a decision to follow the negative path because she didn’t like the possibility that the pastor was right. So, instead of looking for more information and really understanding the point about what God says about marking our bodies, she simply became cynical toward the church.
The conversation ended with me being able to share with her that no one goes to hell because they have tattoos. People go to hell for one reason, because they reject Jesus, the One who paid the debt of sin, for all who believe. 1 John 1:9 (NASB) 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Jesus came to the earth to rescue anyone who would believe that He died for their sins, (Romans 10:9).
It was a great joy to be able to share with her that she didn’t need to live her life cynical toward the church, but that she could embrace Jesus, the One who loves her and all of us so much, that He would give up His life as the debt payment for the sins we commit. I told her we are all broken, messed up people. We all need the Lord to forgive us of the sin we have committed against Him. He came to rescue us from the darkness. (Colossians 1:13)
We talked a little more, and then left with reassuring her that Jesus did love her and that she could find eternal life in Him, if she would confess her sin to Him and then receive His forgiveness. I pray for her and many like her, who have let cynicism turn them against the Lord and His church.
Perhaps cynicism has crept in to your heart and you are allowing it to control your mind and therefore, your actions. You don’t have to live like that. If you will give God your heart, mind and soul, He will make you new inside. He will give you new thinking and new spiritual eyes to see Him working in you and through you. You will begin to understand His love for you and His plan for your eternal life. I wish I could say life will be perfect from here on, but Jesus never promised us that either. In fact, He told us just the opposite, John 16:33 (NASB) 33 “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” Did you hear that? He came to overcome the world. Meaning, everything that keeps you stuck in a cynical mindset can be set free to live this life full of joy and contentment.
It’s easy to be cynical, but it is so much more enjoyable to live in peace with God and man.