This might be a bit controversial (it might not be), but hopefully you’ll stick with me until the end.
The world is becoming more and more secular every day. Nothing showcases this more than the holidays. Consumerism is rampant, tempers are short, and the real message gets lost in translation.
We argue about inconsequential things. There’s more to life than attaining “stuff”. What ever happened to love thy neighbor? (Matt 22: 36-40)
We’ve forgotten one of Jesus’ most profound lessons. In an world where everyone wants equality, it is in surprisingly short supply. When a Christian group can wave signs proclaiming “God Hates [anything]” and get labeled a hate group, we should know that we need to step up our game.
Yes, Jesus also that we should hold each other accountable (Matt 18: 15-20), but, I offer that he was talking about those within the Church, not those outside it. And, let’s not forget, Jesus also told us to look at the plank in our own eye before complaining about the spec in our brother’s (Matt 7: 2-5).
I’m not calling for the Church to allow gay marriage, that’d be like asking the Church to sell pornography in its bookstores. The Church cannot promote unions that it finds not in order with the creative designs God has for human nature and matrimony.
I’m not lobbying against the Church. That’s not my intent at all. There’s a reason our founding father’s wanted separation of church and state, though that line’s been crossed more and more in recent years and seems like the state wants to control the church and force it to bend to secular demands; that just will not happen (sorry, Democrats).
That said, why do so many Christians rage against the war on Christmas, gay marriage, or transgenders using public restrooms (um can’t we just have 3 restrooms everywhere? One male, one female, and one unisex? maybe not practical, but compromise is the heart of politics
…or is it money?), but pornography and sex before marriage get a pass because they are such an accepted part of mainstream society?
Can we not see that society itself is disordered?
Whenever I find myself faltering and falling down a path that is contrary to the teachings from the Word of God, I sometimes will turn myself around, but not always. That’s when Jesus’ words in Matthew 18 become so important. It often takes the help and guidance of friends and family to get us to turn around. Yes, they are not always the most tactful–we are all human after all–and the message might not sink in right away, but I promise you, I am far more willing to accept it from a someone who comes from a place of love than from a complete stranger who doesn’t know my story.
I mean, if God is love, and we are called to make disciples of all nations, how can we showcase God if we spew hate from our lips, our social media, and our actions?
Life isn’t precious anymore. We live in a society that is okay with killing, whether unborn babies or convicted felons. We forget that God is the ultimate judge, that He alone can change hearts. Who are we to tell Him that He cannot? We only need to look at the story of Maria Goretti’s attacker to see the transformative power of God.
Sometimes I wonder what the world would look like if we stopped chasing “likes” and started chasing Jesus. If our words and deeds promoted love and respect for all, not just those who look, talk, and act like us or believe what we believe then we might start bringing people back into the Church rather than driving them away.
Change starts from within. I must look at my own heart, my own dreams and goals, and my own failings before I can ask another to change.