I saw a post on Facebook that started, “I am done with Christians…” I read something about hypocrisy but didn’t go any further. Part of me was offended. But I think part of me was worried about being convicted. Another part of me realized that the world will hate us because they hate Jesus Christ and they are offended by the gospel and don’t want to hear about sin and salvation. Another part of me realize that many claim to be Christian that are not and some of us are followers of Christ and often stumble, not acting the way we should or saying the things we should. One thing I think about lately when scrolling through all the posts on my feed, when was the last time someone (me included) has said something nice about another instead of bashing someone? If you have to think about it, it has been too long. As followers of Jesus, we need to be kind to others and show love to them. I wish that everyone would.
1 Corinthians 13:1-7
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.
Let us show more love and kindness to one another. Let us think (and pray) before we speak. When we discuss our beliefs and reveal sin to others, are we doing it to bring others to Christ so that they may be saved and have joy and peace? Or are we trying to show we are right and they are wrong? Show them love. On the other hand, love is not saying it’s ok when it is not. It is not looking the other way when someone is living in sin. When someone is in danger, we warn them, even if it is not what they want to hear, but we do it in love; we show kindness whether we agree or not.
Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.“
I get so tired of reading social media posts (not to mention news media and sometimes people on the streets) where people are bashing political leaders or each other because of their ideas or beliefs. I need to make sure I don’t get caught up in that. No matter what others believe or say, we need to love them. Even if they bash Christians we are to love them. Even if they go against everything we stand for, we are to love them. We need to pray for them. Perhaps through this, doors will open.
“But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you.“
How easy it is to love those close to you (well, most of the time). But, to show love to those who always disagree and argue and go against what you believe and what you stand for is not so easy. That only comes through the Holy Spirit. Seek God. Pray often. Ask for a forgiving and merciful heart. Remember the love that Jesus showed us. While we were sinners, while we were enemies of God, Jesus took our sins on His shoulders to the cross and paid for our sins. Jesus said that the world would hate us because they hated Him. He said that we would be persecuted from the world. He prepared us for that.
“If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.”
“And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.”
So when someone says, “they have had it with Christians,” show them kindness. And think about what they say. Maybe there is some truth to it as well. Maybe their experience are with a “wolf in sheep’s clothing.” Maybe they need to learn that a true follower of Jesus is about love. Maybe they need to hear how much Jesus loves them.