Cherished people in my life have drawn lines that seem more like demarcation lines than declaring their point-of-views. I am often without words to respond to what feels like a dare to cross them. I know that as a believer, I am called to a higher standard, God’s standard, for how I respond.
Instead of looking at “those” people as being the enemy, we are called to treat them as precious creations of God Himself. Creations who were made unique, with purpose and value for His kingdom. Many don’t even understand what that looks like today. The idea that we were all created in God’s image is not instilled in us and that part of our souls seems to have gone quiet with the longing for connection.
When we meet people who are different from “us” we need to remember that we were once the same as they were, too. Our issues, struggles, sins may have been different, but we were all far from God. We all need to remember that we need grace, we need goodness and those things are fruit from a relationship with Jesus and only Jesus. Any attempt to find this kind of connection outside of an acceptance of Christ into our lives is just counterfeit.
When we accept God’s goodness and grace through Christ, we begin to understand who we were created to fully become. By choosing to say yes to Christ we are choosing say no to the things that will put us into bondage and chains. We choose to say no to the things that hurt us, things that hurt others, and we choose to say yes to the things in our lives which will bear fruit and bless others in the process.
In the past couple of days I read this passage in my devotional and it explains what I am processing lately.
For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good (Titus 2:11-14).
In other words, even if my views are different from another, I am still called to love those around me, to be kind. To give grace, even if it’s not returned, to share God’s goodness with people and His love for them–this should be our response to everyone. Even if they laugh, even if they “unfriend” us on social media because of our views.
Remember Best Beloved, you are to be Jesus with skin on for those who may never enter a church. So let us love one another, give grace, be good to each other, and be used for God’s purposes and glory until the day He returns.