Saturday, I had a new experience. I got to see my baby girl and her best friend compete in a cheer competition. It was a fun day. We got to see many teams compete. Some were really good, some not so much….and some in between. But, one team in particular stole my heart. The last team to compete was a special needs team. Oh…my…goodness! They were so sweet! Yes, they needed a lot of extra help. The adults had to be on the floor the whole time. And, no, technically, they were nowhere near the best. But, they had the most heart. Every time they got to do a flip or…whatever….they did it with exuberance and a huge smile. I found myself with absolutely no pity for them – only excitement that they were getting to do what the “other” kids were doing. I’m smiling just thinking about it. When they were awarded their trophy for participating, one little girl hugged it! Okay…all together now….AWWWWWWW.
So, of course, you know I didn’t witness all that without some lesson attached…right??? It made me think of the church. In a church, there are folks from all walks of life and all in different places in their walk with the Lord. But, all too often, we expect those who are “babies” or (forgive me!) handicapped to act like mature Christians. And before you start yelling at your computer, let me explain.
Let’s start with the easy one….babies or toddlers in Christ. If a person has only been saved for a week, a month, a year, you can’t expect them to respond to situations in the same way that a person who’s walked with the Lord for decades. Naturally, those who are farther down the road with Christ need to be a bit more patient and loving with those “babies.”
Okay….now I’m going to tackle a harder one. How about those who are handicapped in their walk? Maybe they’ve gotten saved, but haven’t grown. Maybe they haven’t developed their relationship with Jesus personally. Maybe they have emotional baggage that has them stuck in a certain place. I think it can be really easy to look at folks like that and judge them. Or at least say “they shouldn’t act that way!” (And yes, I’ve been guilty!). But, I submit that those things should be covered by love. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8 NIV
So…as with most of my posts, this one is all about love. Just love each other! Does that mean we ignore sin or pretend it doesn’t exist? Of course not! (But, let’s save that for another day.) It simply means that we can love each other, no matter what, because Jesus loved us first.
Be blessed and tell someone you love them!