To all my Christian and conservative friends ( I am one of you), I know that many of you are angry and dismayed over the recent Supreme Court ruling, legalizing gay and lesbian marriages in all 50 states. But this is not the time to vent and bemoan how terrible things are in our country. This is not the time to stand up in both social media and even the pulpit’s of churches and declare that the gay and lesbian lifestyle is an abomination. This is not even a time to fear, as so many are apt to do.
Am I scared and worried after this ruling? Yes. I am very scared. But not for the reasons you think. I’m scared that Christians will now only confirm what so many already believe us to be. Intolerant, judgmental, haters. I’m afraid we are going to put an even bigger wall up between us and the rest of the world by our reactions and attitudes to today’s ruling. And I am afraid that by what we say and do, we will never demonstrate God’s love to people – all people.
Christians, we have an opportunity right now to show everyone that we are not what they think we are. We have the chance right now to show and speak to people in a way that Jesus would have and did while He walked on this earth. This is not the time to fight a war. This is the time to show God’s love. Put down your verbal weapons that are attacking those we do not agree with and try fighting a battle the way that Christ did. Love them.
What an opportunity we have right now to be what Christ wants us to be. I quote again the verse that God has been hammering into my heart for months now. I recently did a three week series based on this verse. You can find the podcast (as well as all my messages) on itunes by clicking on this link You can also find these three messages on youtube at this youtube playlist link. Galatians 5:6 says “The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.” Try reacting to people that way instead of freaking out about a Supreme Court ruling.
In talking to many Christians and seeing their posts and rants on social media, most are more concerned about the court’s ruling than they are the lives and souls of the people we rub shoulders with every day. For some reason, they are using this Supreme Court ruling to draw the battle lines for a war that is not the one we should be fighting.
The war is not against flesh and blood. It is not against the gay community. It is not against the government. If it were, then it would be time to take up our verbal weapons and go to battle. But that is not the battle that we have been called to fight. We are in a battle over people’s lives and for lost souls. And to win that battle, we must fight in a very unconventional manner. We cannot assault them with our words, attitudes, and actions of disapproving negativity. Those are great weapons to use if we want to argue and “be right.” Those are great weapons to use if we want to try to win A battle that makes us feel better about ourselves because we are right and they are wrong. But they are lousy weapons to use if we want to win the war – the war for the souls of people. We can only win that war through demonstrating with words, attitudes, and actions the love of God.
Christians love to hide behind phrases like “hate the sin, but love the sinner” and “speak the truth in love.” If we could truly do that in a way that the world sees God’s love in us then, yes, I agree. We must speak the truth. Unfortunately, the world sees Christians as nothing more than judgmental haters because we scream and cry about their sin without showing them the love of God. I do agree that we are to stand against sin, but that stance is in our own lives and the lives of other followers of Christ. Not the world. They are not followers of Christ. They do not have the power of the Holy Spirit to help them. They sin because they are sinners. That’s what they do. Our ranting about a sin is not going to bring them to Christ. Our love and showing love the way Christ did on earth will
When Christ walked this earth, He did not go around yelling about the atrocities of people’s sins. He loved them and accepted them where they were. He offered them hope and forgiveness. He gave them healing and restoration BEFORE He told them to go and sin no more. We do it backwards today. The church is not at all what Jesus was. He told His disciples that the world will know they are His Followers by their love. Not their words of condemnation.
I know that Jesus did at times speak very directly and harshly to some people. But look who they were. They were the religious people of the day. He was harsh to those who were religious and self-righteous. Those who judged the sinners for not following their ways. Those are the ones He laid into. But for everyone else, those who needed His love, forgiveness, and restoration, He spoke only words of love.
I know that if Jesus were physically walking on earth today, then He would be hanging out with those very people that so many Christians judge and stay away from. He would be eating dinner with the gays and the lesbians and as a result of His love and acceptance of them as people, many would come to Him. So why are so many of us today living the opposite way that Jesus did? Do we truly think we know better than Jesus how to win the war for lost souls?
So we have a choice to make. We can either feed the idea that we are intolerable haters or we can offer them God by being Jesus on earth. We can’t do both. As for speaking the truth in love, we earn the right to speak the truth when they see the love inside us. One might make us feel good about ourselves for “standing for righteousness” while the other might actually show that God and His people are loving and will draw people into His kingdom. Which one do you think God wants you to do?