Lay Down Your Stones and Outstretch Your Arms

The world of social media can be helpful and the world of social media can be so very harmful.


As I scrolled through my facebook news feed, I stumbled upon a startling post. It was the kind of post that left me feeling downhearted and disappointed. It left me feeling like a lot of us Christians are really missing the mark on this whole “love your neighbor as yourself” concept.  As I read the words, my heart was grieved.


The picture shared was a screenshot of another woman’s post which included some slight profanity. “And she calls herself a Christian” the poster condescendingly commented.


My jaw dropped.


I can’t even.  I just can’t even.


Did she seriously just blast this lady on facebook because of a cuss word? Did she really just put this woman’s “sin” on display for the world to see?


For the love.


I exhaled deeply.


Is public stoning really a thing of the past? I asked myself


No.


Sadly, public stoning is prevalent, even in today’s society. The only difference is that it has taken on a different shape.


By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another John 13:35


Jesus didn’t say “they’ll know you are my disciples by your self righteous accusations blasted on social media. He didn’t say “they will know that you are my disciples by the way you turn your nose up at their behavior when you walk by.” No, they will know us by our love.  


Maybe it’s me, but I’m weary.

I’m truly weary of all the unkindness thrown around everywhere I turn. I’m weary of the self righteous condemnation that abounds.

Goodness gracious, all of our righteousness is like filthy rags compared to Christ. It breaks my heart to see how my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ can treat unbelievers. I can only imagine that if breaks my sinful heart, how much does it grieves the heart of our savior. His people... who have been called by his name...casting stones when they should be offering outstretched arms.


Where’s the grace?


As believers, have we really forgotten how it felt to be on the other side of salvation? Is our memory so dim that we can’t remember how far we have fallen from grace?  Are we so focused on the speck in our brothers eyes, that we fail to see the plank in our own? Do we not remember what it felt like to so desperately need a savior? Were we drawn to his condemnation or was it his love that won us over? Was it his grace and selfless sacrifice that drew us in?

I’m reminded of a quote by Gandhi. “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”

Who cares if we are right? If we are pushing people further away from the cross, the truth of our words are in vain. I’m not suggesting that we water down the gospel or call the sin acceptable, I’m merely suggesting to share the truth in LOVE. Without love, our words are nothing but a resounding gong. The truth is, people won’t care how much we have to say, until they know how much we care.

Jesus was the epitome of love. I would venture to say that love was his trademark. So, let’s put away the stones...and instead, stretch out our arms.



Summer Gordon