What Kind of Christian Are You?
I was on Facebook recently looking at comments on a funny post that was shared. Someone's comment was, "what kind of Christian are you anyway?" I don't remember the context of the comment, it wasn't even directed at me, but those words have stuck with me for over a week.
What kind of Christian am I anyway? I am someone who loves Jesus. I strive to love like Jesus, to forgive like Jesus, to live like Jesus. Do I ALWAYS succeed? Absolutely not! I'll be the first to admit I make mistakes....many mistakes.
Wouldn't it be nice if we could all get away from the labels? My claim to being a Christian has nothing to do with being perfect. In fact, to me, being a Christian means I am claiming I am not perfect. I wouldn't need Jesus if I could do this on my own. Believing in Jesus means a fuller life for me now, and a future in paradise for all eternity!
There was a time when a sweet young woman visited me. She was a Jehovah's Witness. I will admit with shame, the old me would have slammed the door in her face after making a rude statement about my love of Jesus. Or hide behind the curtains until the "coast was clear", but I thought about what Jesus would do. He would treat her with love. She is living her faith in the way that is right to her. It doesn't matter if I agree or not. I am allowed my beliefs and she is allowed hers. We talked about Jesus. I was firm with her that I had my own beliefs and would not be joining her as a Jehovah's Witness. We hugged and she respected my beliefs and I respected hers. It was an encounter that changed me. An encounter I would not have experienced if I had ignored the doorbell.
I urge us all to look past the labels and into the person in front of you. It doesn't matter if we are the same religion or different, if we believe or not, if we are the same race or different, the same gender or different. This world is filled with judgement. I am judged for being a Christian, for being one of those weirdos who raises their hands up in worship at church. I judge others for all sorts of things. Its in our human nature. Is that an excuse for treating others poorly? No! It's a prayer to do better next time.
Its OK for us to be in different stages of our faith. Some of us have experienced God in a very real way, some of us are still praying for God to show up. We go in and out, we deal with stresses in this life that change our faith. Sometimes it's a step closer, sometimes we remove ourselves. As Jesus followers we are called to love. To be made new every day. Its that simple.