Because of my leadership role in my church, I make excuses.What excuse do I make? The excuse that I don't want to bring judgement on my family, my teaching style, but most of all I don't want to bring judgement on myself. I fear my views will be seen in a negative light, by people with closed minds judging me. (The thing we aren't supposed to do).
So I don't post links to amazing blogs because they have different opinions of those around me. I don't know if I can handle my friends opinions about me. I fear being told I can't teach, or lead in my church because my opinions are different. My role is a role I take very serious. Something I have done so long that the work I do for the Lord has taken up my identity. Almost my entire identity.
So I sit quietly, not sharing where God is ever changing my perspective. Where God is pushing me to love others as he first loved me. Where love is seen as a verb. Love is to serve others, no matter who they are, what they do or believe, just love them. Unconditional love doesn't look at picking right and wrong out of that person, it looks at showing them love because they were created by God for a purpose, because they too are human, and loved by an almighty God.
I do believe in repentence and that through that repentence we are made whole. I also believe that there are clear lines of right and wrong, but I see so many people who just up and leave people who are doing wrong because of their behavior, or who they are.
I thank God my perspective has changed, and may people see this change in me. May he take away my fear and give me boldness to say what I feel. May love shine around me, love that comes from the Father God and his Son.
When in doubt follow Jesus' example...
At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.Jesus didn't come to condemn us...
But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.
At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
“No one, sir,” she said.
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” - John 8:2-11
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. - John 3:17-18
So, go now and condemn no one. Don't say that because someone sins in a way that is blatant and disrespectful they don't deserve love. Love them. Never abandon someone you disagree with, because they may be the loneliest out there, and never quarrel over matters of convictions.
Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand. - Romans 14:1-4
Now if they are asking you to partake in the sin, then by all means run. Run fast and far away. Always ask God to help you discern what is around you, and to give you wisdom when you shouldn't be somewhere or do something.
Dear Heavenly Father,
We praise you for your love for us. That you don't condemn us for our shortcomings. Please give us the grace and wisdom to do the same.
In Jesus' Name,