Thursday, September 9, 2010

A teenage girl from the mid-west and a book from the middle east

Last night at Crossfire, we talked about stereotypes.  We sang some songs, played some games, read some scripture and went into breakout groups.  It was pretty much the same thing we always do, until something happened.  One student allowed the Spirit to move in her life. 

She opened up about her story and began to share how people treat her b/c of what's on the outside.  She shared about how that warped her view of others and ultimately her Savior.  She was vulnerable.  She cried.  Then she wept.  It was in that moment that I saw Christ speak to her heart.  Life change!

I was reading through different posts and blogs and news stories today and I kept seeing one particular story pop up:  the Florida pastor (the fact that you know who I'm talking about goes to show the media coverage of this incident).  I can't help but feel like the two separate events are intertwined somehow. 

One has to do w/ a teenage girl in Wentzville, MO and the other has to do w/ a pastor of a church in Florida.  But essentially they are the same.

What I mean is this:  that teenage girl had been decieved into thinking she had less worth because of her appearence.  That Florida pastor has been decieved into believing that someone else has less worth because of their religion.  Both are lies.

Christ came to reconcille us to Him.  He came so that we may be freed and not have to carry the chains of sin & death.  He came to set the captives free.  And yet so often we allow Satan to trick and decieve us into believing his lies.  Whether that lie is: "You are of less value b/c you look different" or it's: "If you yell loud enough people will believe you're right and they're wrong."  Both are lies and have nothing to do with the Gospel of Jesus.

Instead, Jesus taught things like blessed are the peacemakers (Matthew 5:9), love and pray for your enemy (Matthew 5:42-44), turn the other cheek (Matthew 5:38-40/ Luke 6:28-30 ), and blessed are those who are persecuted (Matthew 5:9-11).  He showed us a different way, a better way to live.  In Philippians 2:3-4 it says, "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.  Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others."  Our attitude should be just like Jesus, who loved us while we were still sinners and died on a cross to show us that love.  Since when did we become about judging others based on appearances or any other superficial means.  Since when did we forget that this fight is not against flesh & blood, but against rulers, against authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil (Ephesians 6:12). 

I'm not sure where that leaves us.  I know that Jesus' way doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me most times.  I do know that I serve a God that doesn't make a lot of sense and I love that.  I do know that most of the time I hang on for dear life as He directs me.  I do know that He has called me (us) to love others regardless of what/who they are. And I do know that I'm not called to prove Him right, I'm called to show people His love.

So, there you go.  A teenage girl from the mid-west and a book from the middle east...who woulda' thunk it.



  1. Thats really cool. I was having a bad day today and it lifted me up. You never know who's life you may be changing, or influencing. You really don't...