I’ve had this blog floating around for weeks now, and after stewing over it for long enough, I’ve decided to just publish it already.
*This might be a challenging post to read, but don’t we all need a little challenge in our lives? 🙂
The last few weeks have been INSANE. There seems to be so much “good” going on in my personal life, but so much “bad” going on in the world around me. The other day I had a random and unpleasant experience with someone that spurred an extremely deep and intense conversation between me, CMB, and some friends.
I was approached the other night in Barnes and Noble by some nut of a man misguided old man who apparently thought I needed a lecture. I was politely minding my own business in the Christian section, when he started talking to me. He basically went on and on about some series of books that have all the answers and how I “could spend my whole life looking for answers among the pile of bullshit” that was on the shelf in front of me. After a brief second of shock, I tried to relocate a few shelves down, but he only got louder as he lectured about how all of these people (mind you…I was looking at C.S. Lewis books and the like) have just missed it. (I’m pretty positive that this man was off his rocker)
Anyway, I left the store in a state of extreme frustration. I was SO fired up about this encounter (poor CMB, he had to hear me go on and on about it..). The nerve of this man!! *This little encounter happened around the same time that I heard and read about the growing number of suicides due to being outed as a homosexual, so I was already on edge.
When I left the store that night, I wasn’t fired up because of the conversation that I had had with the man (he was somewhat sweet, and he just needs a little guidance). I could care less that he said some cuss word or that he rambled on and on and on and on. I was fired up because he approached me not out of love or compassion, but out of condemnation and pity.
There was something about that encounter that set me off. Obviously this man doesn’t represent 100% of Christians, but it still got me thinking…
What are we doing? I think it saddens God to see Christians approaching people out of hatred and self-righteousness. I’m more and more convinced that corporately, we’ve missed it. Why aren’t we out meeting people where they are?
What gives us the right to stand on some street corner protesting abortion? We don’t even KNOW those women. I’m sick and tired of hearing that “if adoption funds would go up, we’d adopt every unwanted child.” That sounds like a cop out. I just read a study that showed that in America ALONE there are more Christians than there are orphans in the WORLD. How many of us are willing to get off that stupid street corner and take time to walk inside the clinic? How many of us are willing to take time to get to know these women before we stand outside and (silently or not) scream out that they’re sinners. Why don’t we take time to LOVE them before we show them that we hate what they’re doing? Jesus absolutely cares about that unborn child, but He also cares about that struggling woman, and unfortunately the world today doesn’t see that reflection in Christians today. It seems like we’ve put the cart before the horse and we’ve chosen to “hate the sin” before we’ve made sure that the the sinner knows that we “love the sinner.”
What are we doing about the homosexual epidemic happening in our world? I recently watched a video from The Ellen DeGeneres Show and after, thought to myself that it’s pretty sad that Ellen DeGeneres can point out the right actions before Christians can. In my opinion, corporately, Christians are just as guilty about pointing out “fagots” and “homos” instead of sticking up for them and calling them “loved” and “cherished.” So what if they’re gay? Guess what? Sometimes, I say cuss words…Sometimes, I gossip… And whether I stumble for a moment, or whether I choose to make a bad decision for the rest of my life, God is still God and sin is still sin. No sin is heavier than another, and when it’s all said and done, He’s gonna judge me just as harshly as the “gays.” Who do we think we are that we can attack them for their lifestyle choice? Do we honestly think that our Bible-thumping, screaming, hatred is gonna convince them to turn to Jesus? If you were gay, would you want to associate with Christians? I wouldn’t.
In a book that I read, it showed statistics that said that the number one thing that Christians are known for is being anti homosexual. We’re not known for our love, we’re not known for being followers of Jesus, we’re not known for our compassion, we’re known for hating gays. We’ve made sure that the gay community knows of how much we disapprove of their lifestyle, but we’ve neglected to make sure that they know that we love them regardless.
We’ve put such weight on the abortion issue, the gay issue, and other issues, that we’ve seemingly made them “unforgivable.” Paul murdered Christians, and he was one of the closest followers of Jesus. God’s grace and mercy know no bounds, so why are we trying to box them in? Honestly, who do we think we are?
We’re so concerned with speaking in tongues and prophesying, but it’s all crap if we’re gonna live our lives the way we’ve chosen to live them. What good does speaking in tongues do if we’re snubbing our noses at the homeless and calling the local high school kid a “homo?” Do you think that standing on a street corner protesting abortion really matters if we’re not building relationships and making sure that they know the love that we do?
It’s time to re-align our priorities. Today’s corporate Christians are far from a mirror image of Christ, and it’s time we get back to our mission.
1 Corinthians 13 paints this issue better than my words do..
If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
We’re here to love. Why don’t we start showing it?