"God is love."
I tweeted this sometime in 2013 which most of you will remember as the year DOMA was found unconstitutional. Around the same time, everyone else was tweeting #loveislove.
My sheltered, high school self felt that it was the proper "Christian response." Unfortunately, I didn't stop there.
For so long I thought being right was more important. Making sure everyone knew that I was a Christian and they HAD to know what I believed was right and what THEY were doing was wrong. They just had to.
So I would tell them. I'd excuse myself because I didn't hold hateful protest signs and I didn't cause riots. I wasn't one of those people, but I told them kindly what I believed. I told them in a loving way that I was right and they were wrong because that's what the Bible says to do...right?
They will know us by what we say and how we say it?
In the years that follow, it would take a lot more of Jesus's love for the scales to fall from my eyes and realize the truth.
John 13:34-35 says this, "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
We've been doing it wrong.
Christians ask yourself what's more important to you, being right or doing what's right.
For some reason, we spend more time saying "we are called to love" and "love the sinner, hate the sin" than we do actually loving.
I hear so many Christians complaining about how THEY get a whole month of pride. Well, pride in 2018 just happened and I think it's time for us Christians to meditate on this food for thought from Brandi Miller of the Huffpost:
"In many ways, Pride Month became necessary because of homophobic Christians. As a collective...Christians, particularly conservative evangelicals, have created much of the context for the historic exclusion, abuse, victimizing and othering of LGBTQ people."
Pride month has been celebrated in June to honor the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan but it isn't just here. This community has endured decades and decades of abuse from all kinds of people, including Christians.
If they're supposed to know us by how we love, how can they ever know us if we're not showing them any real love?
Yes, there is a way to love and disagree with someone. No, it doesn't look like condescension. It doesn't mean you need to say the words, "I disagree with you, but love you anyway!" Because when you say it, do you think that person feels any more loved than they did before?
We are flawed. All human beings flawed by our own nature have a very distorted view of what love looks like and so we have a hard time showing it.
So how about instead of relying on our imperfect selves to show love, we start relying on Jesus? He who extended His perfect love and grace towards us. He's calling us to do the same.
How do we do that?
Someone told me this recently and maybe you've heard it before, but it's a great reminder for Christians today.
They said: "Imagine Jesus attending a Pride parade and inviting anyone and everyone to have dinner with Him just so that he could be with them. Just so that He could love on them."
Now remember that you don't have to imagine it, because all over the gospel we read many different accounts of Jesus dining with prostitutes, adulterers, tax collectors, etc. Many who had been shunned by society and deemed sinners broke bread with Him and witnessed His love firsthand.
Yes, Jesus would have dined with them today and allowed His love to do what He wants to do, not what we want Him to do.
Christians, it's time to stop putting words in God's mouth and using it as an excuse for why we're not displaying His love, but instead picking and choosing who gets to be loved by Him.
Loving is not telling them, "Oh, I'll pray for you." It's praying for them regardless of whether they know it or not.
Love is not telling them what you believe in a nice and kind way (because I assure you, it's probably not nice and kind at all).
Love is not a lot of what we have been doing.
So hear my heart. This is not a call for good and evil; sin and not sin, but a call to love. The same love Christ repeatedly shows us extended towards ALL of those who were created in His image.
This year's pride month has come and gone, but that doesn't mean we can't start swallowing our pride today.
- Why The Christian Church Needs To Stop Pushing People Away ›
- 10 Bible Verses For Those Feeling Unloved ›
- Christianity Isn't About Condemnation; It's About Love ›
- 8 Things Christians Need to Do More on Social Media - RELEVANT ... ›
- The Art of Loving Unlovable People | Today's Christian Woman ›
- 10 Habits Christians Should Practice to Better Love One Another ›
- 5 Reasons Christians Should Attend a Gay Pride Parade ... ›
- HE LIVES! Remembering WeHo Jesus During Pride Month - WeHo ... ›