From: April –
I’ve been pretty bothered lately at what I read on Facebook from people I know to be Christians. It bothers me how narrow minded and blocked off some are. I always try to put myself in other people’s shoes and think of how I may have reacted or handled certain situations in my own life. I just see so much hate disguised as a “Biblical Stance”. And I just want to say to those people….get over yourself. I’m begging you.
I can think of countless situations our country is dealing with right this second that could have either been prevented or handled peacefully with one thing. Love.
Had we loved like we were supposed to, so many people would not feel the need to be defensive or callous towards God or His people. Unfortunately, our lack of the RIGHT kind of love has made us counterproductive in our ONE job here on this earth.
I don’t know how many people get bothered by things like this. But I do. And its overwhelming because I think to myself “what could I do that would make any form of a difference, this is too big now, for every 1 person who shows love thru Christ’s eyes, there’s a thousand people showing love through their own eyes. And I don’t know where to begin to fix that.”
It is a little scary when i think about the “narrow road”.
“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.
14 For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it. – Matthew 7:13-14
It’s scary because so many Christians view that little road through performance-based eyes. We focus so hard on what the rules are, but forget WHOSE we are. My devotion this morning reminded me of that.
“ Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” –Psalm 46:10
In our own terms this says ” Shut up. Be still. Stop trying to Be ME.”
The narrow road, I believe, will be the people who “get it”. And what’s so terrifying is that there will be people who thought they would be on that road. People who assumed they made the cut. Assumed they did enough good stuff and followed enough rules to make it.
But not all of them will. A little further down in Matthew 7, it says:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. -v. 21.
There are so many things that we have complicated when it comes to the bible. It’s almost impossible to figure out what EXACTLY we are to do regarding certain things. BUT one thing is crystal clear. I think the Lord made it this way on purpose. Because He wanted us to universally understand one thing. And because nothing is by error through Him. There are two commandments that are noted as the “First and greatest, and the second one is ‘like it’ “.
36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”
37 And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’
38 This is the great and [b]foremost commandment.
39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’
40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”
The ten commandments were written in the old testament and for the Israelite people. Then almost 4,000 years later, Christ is here and the First and Greatest commandments were written. I’m not saying the 10 commandments are old school and shouldn’t be followed, but I AM saying, they should be a bi-product of the more important two. Focus on “The 2” and “The 10” will come naturally. All the other things that seem so confusing….they really don’t matter anyway. Not to Him.
But for some reason, we get stuck on “The 10″and all the Thou Shalt Not’s. And therefor “The Two” do not come naturally. Instead of approaching the Not’s with love, we attack with judgement and hate for the person rather than the act. So now, as a result, some people actually find trying to love people a painful task. Because they have experienced the unmerciful ways of the people who are supposed to represent it. We have allowed “The 10” take precedence over what is most important. And THAT has resulted in a fallen America. Prioritizing love incorrectly is the root for any and all forms of prejudice.
If we want to bring people to Christ, we have to first bring Christ to the people.
If we want to bring people to Christ, we have to first bring Christ to the people. You would think this would be obvious. But evidently not.
And then, when and If they do receive Christ as their savior, what they do with that is up to them. BUT we cannot expect people to accept Christ on the basis that they “change who they are” as a prerequisite. That’s not how Jesus works. That’s not how any of this works.
Change is from the Lord. WHEN the Lord wants, IF the Lord wants, and HOW the Lord wants. HE will lead the way, not you or me. He may involve us somehow but that is up to Him, not us. Your or my simple act of love may start that journey for someone without our even knowing it.
We are completely ignoring the basics. “The 2” are greater than “The 10”.
Here’s a question: How many people have you saved with your “that’s an abomination, you’re going to hell, but Jesus loves you” speech? My guess is zero. And you have most likely not only pushed them away but a few others as well. You’re not helping anyone, not even yourself.
This may come across harsh- but it’s very frustrating when we know what we need to do (or not do) and we choose to look away. It’s all of us. But it breaks my heart to see my fellow Christians being anything but Christ to people, but thinking they are. We are the ones making this so hard, not “them”. Whoever “they” are need love just like we do. Let’s be honest here. We are all a “they” in one way, shape, or form. I am a “they”.
You don’t wait until your wedding day to tell or show the person you are marrying that you love them. Why on earth would we expect people to accept Christ before seeing His love? Love is action, not words. Jesus’ love was shown through His actions. He had a lot of amazing words and teachings, but those are not what we were called to bow down to today. We are called to bow down to Love. A love that was shown through the greatest sacrifice ever made.
Think about the day you received Christ, IF you have received Christ as your personal savior. I remember rededicating my life in college and what made me make this decision was the fact that I realized I had been living as if my service to God was all that made up my salvation. I totally ignored the fact that He loves me relentlessly and fiercely whether I lift a finger or not. Whether I sin or not. Whether my life is living up to the expectations surrounding me or not.
We have such a hard time showing love because so often, we ourselves don’t know how to accept love. We accept love by being shown love. We can pass on love when we truly understand God’s love, and accept it. God’s love never fails, even when our’s does.
That is why 2 is greater than 10.
Now lets act like it.