When you read the words “soccer mom,” what comes to mind?
A friend of mine, who’s a mom of a soccer player, recently had someone refer to other soccer moms in her life as “pit bull soccer mom friends.” This person said such words without knowing whom these soccer mom friends were. (Me being one of them.)
I recently just finished a long stint as a “soccer mom,” and I can smile as I say, “I was not a pit bull.” Sure, I had my moments fringing on pit bull-ness a time or two or three during a game, but I never lingered there long. I learned early that’s not the way I was to conduct myself. And, my fellow soccer moms didn’t behave in that manner either.
This person must have had an unpleasant experience with a mom of a soccer player at some point in life. Now to him/her, all soccer moms are ferocious dogs, just waiting to pounce on a weaker species. (No intention of offending pit bulls or their owners here.)
Let me ask you another question:
When you read the word “Christian,” what comes to mind?
Ask a certain person I know and her response would be a negative one. She experienced a Christian faith-based hypocrisy earlier in life and wants nothing to do with the Christian faith.
Ask someone who just experienced the life-changing transformation of Jesus in his/her life, and the response would be one of joy, elation, promise, and hope.
Ask me, and I’ll respond with, “Christ-one.” A Christian is one who follows the teachings of Jesus Christ, God’s Son, and believes eternal life is found in His life, death and resurrection.
But being someone who has been on the receiving end of affliction from other Christians, even though I’m a fellow Christian, and I write about and share my faith often, my guard is up. For I’ve witnessed many failures in this faith… untruths preached, scripture misquoted, moral collapse, pride-filled deceit, shouting God’s love instead of showing it.
And I can include myself in times of being closed-minded, judgmental, and not showing the love of Jesus to others.
I need to clarify, however, the blessings from other Christians and from this beautiful faith have well outweighed the wreckage.
God has used it all to transform my life. He’s used His people to love me in ways I’ll never be able to repay or even begin to explain. This Christian way of life is such a gift to me. Through it I have hope. Real hope for me, my family, and our future.
But, whether we like it or not, soccer moms (or any category of people) and Christians alike can be labeled and stereotyped based on someone’s experience. We can’t do anything about what’s already taken place, but by our individual examples, we can show others truth by how we live our lives.
So I give you a new command: Love each other deeply and fully. Remember the ways that I have loved you, and demonstrate your love for others in those same ways. Everyone will know you as My followers if you demonstrate your love to others. John 13:34-35
How well are we Christians doing at demonstrating love to others?
Do we judge? Condemn? Exclude?
Or do we bless, forgive, and point others to Jesus? Not shouting Jesus’ love to the world, but showing it instead?
We don’t have to compromise our values, beliefs, and/or God’s truths to show love. Jesus didn’t.
We can still stand for what’s right in that love. Jesus did.
And, we don’t always have to agree to show love. Jesus didn’t.
We are called to love. Period.
Friend, may you and I be known for our love.
There’s someone who needs Jesus’ love today. Someone in your life and in mine. Let’s give it out freely.
Let’s make Him known as we do.
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