I’ve been reading A Praying Life by Paul Miller and here’s a few things I’ve learned concerning how CYNICISM eats away my joy in Christ. Most of these are quotes from the book. All of these we need to remember.
- Cynicism [can so easily be] the air we breath, and [can begin] suffocating our hearts.
- Cynicism kills hope.
- The cure for cynicism is to become like a little child again. Instead of critiquing others’ stories, watch the story our Father is weaving.
- C.S. Lewis once said, “those who will never be fooled can never be delighted, because without self-forgetfulness there can be no delight.”
- The cynic is rarely fooled, therefore he is rarely delighted.
- The cynic focuses on the darkness; the child focuses on the Shepherd.
- Cynicism feels more like bondage…
- Because cynicism misses the presence of the Shepherd, it reverses the picture in John 1 of light invading darkness. Instead, it just looks at the darkness and gets annoyed by the light.
- Like Saruman in The Lord of the Rings, cynicism looks too long into the Dark Lord’s crystal ball. Its attempt to unmask evil unwittingly enlarges evil.
- Believing that you have the perfect relationship, the perfect children, perfect knowledge or a perfect body sets you up for a critical spirit, the breeding ground for cynicism.
- Cynicism looks reality in the face, calls it phony, and prides itself on its insight as it pulls back. [Meanwhile] Thanksgiving looks reality in the face and rejoices at God’s care. It replaces a bitter spirit with a generous one.
- Cynics imagine that they are disinterested observers on a quest for authenticity.
- Cynics assume they are humble because they offer nothing.
- Cynics feel deeply superior because they think they see through everything.
- Cynics read all of these and doubt that being overly critical is really that bad.
- Our only hope is to follow Jesus as he leds us out of cynicism.