Monday, April 27, 2009

Living to Love/Help a Brother Out

I've been frustrated lately by people feeling they have the right to judge one another--especially those who claim to be Christians. As such, shouldn't our last concern be judgement?  Wasn't Jesus' (remember? the One we're supposed to treat as our master?) greatest commands to love God and to love others? Where there is judgement... there is NO room for love. And we were created to love, not judge. Only God can judge. 

I'm tired of us imposing this scale founded by people on everyone. Murder is the worst, being gay is next, followed by having sex outside of marriage, then lying to your parents etc. (For the record, I think all of those things are sins and are bad not because they are magically "bad," but because they are things that prevent us from fulfilling all God has in store for us and have natural consequences on our hearts and the lives of others.  I'm not condoning, that isn't the point.) However, to God, a sin is a sin. The first lie we tell makes us equally as guilty as taking a life--not because it's a check off an invisible guilty list, but because these are transgressions against the very heart of God. I'm tired of people thinking that just because they go to church, or spent an hour volunteering, have more money, or whatever they gained any favor in God's sight or are better people because of it.

For, didn't Jesus say, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in your weakness," then Paul continued, "Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ's power may rest on me" (2 Corinthians 12:9). 

I feel like I've been through enough crap and have seen enough in life to have learned that when we start to approach others with an attitude/lens of love an acceptance ("I'm going to love you no matter what, first an foremost, and I know someone who has a better plan for you and loves you more than you'll ever realize") rather than judgement ("You are wrong, and let me tell ya, I'm gonna fix it. Otherwise, you're headed to Hell") we begin, I think, to start loving people like Jesus does. Sure, when you see your brother or sister stumbling, be able to take note, but don't judge them! Let your heart break for the struggle they are going through! Come along side them and let them know that no matter what they are loved and there is nothing they can do to kill that off. Then, and only then, do people start to find confidence in who they truly are.

I know I've written this a million times, but if we didn't ALL need help, Jesus wouldn't have died for the world. He would have died for those who needed Him. But God so loved the WORLD that He gave His only Son. We are ALL messed up. All sinners. All hurting. All broken. 

"While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew's house, many tax collectors and "sinners" came and ate with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and 'sinners'?" On hearing this, Jesus said, "Is it not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick? But go and learn what this means, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners" (Matthew 9:10-13). 

All that being said... what's the use of not judging if we're not also actively loving one another--brothers, neighbors, and enemies the same...  Whether it be holding the hurting, feeding the hungry, or clothing the naked, may we never forget that love really IS a verb and we are failing in our calling as followers of Christ when we fail to actively love. 


b said...

i had a rant this past summer about the supposed "hierarchy" of sins that christians/people in general are ok with.

like - homosexuality isnt ok but sleeping around, even within the church, IS?
and why the heck Do we compare bad things to hitler?

Nicole Jeannette said...

because we're white... hahah