Maybe I just don’t fit in.
I’m reminded of Hermey, the misfit elf in the Christmas special, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. He didn’t fit in either. He wanted to be a dentist in Christmastown, not an elf.
(Photo credit: Rankin/Bass)
I’d feel pretty comfortable hanging out with Hermey today. We’d be good friends, for sure.
I’m a Christian–a “Christ one,” who follows after Jesus and His teachings. But let me tell you, I’m quite weary of the stereotype that follows it.
I can’t blame others for putting us all in the same group. But there are days I want to scream,
“I’M NOT LIKE THAT!”
I just want to follow Jesus. I want to love like He did. To minister like He did. To hang out with the ones He hung out with, whom no one else would. I want this life He’s given me to count for something in others’ lives. To follow God’s will for my life. To encourage others to get to know this Jesus, without shoving Him down their throats.
I’ve seen the damage “Christians” can do. I’ve witnessed it with my own eyes and ears, and have experienced it personally. It’s no wonder why some have walked away from the organized church. My family and I still are healing from the wreckage of Christians from last year.
If Christians are like that, then, “no thank you.” But I know better. All Christians aren’t like that. Just like all people aren’t like that. It’s not my place to judge, and I won’t stop being a follower of Jesus because of some.
It’s also no wonder why my children could care less about going to church anymore. “Church people” hurt them, and more importantly in their minds, hurt their parents.
Today, I’m taking a hard look at my faith and how I’m following and representing Jesus. How well am I doing at this loving God and loving others thing? After all, it’s the name of this blog. After all, that’s what Jesus calls us to do.
Do I come across as “perfect,” with a perfect faith, a perfect and unrelatable life? Or do I allow God to use my mess-ups, my hang ups, my not-so-perfect self to encourage others?
Am I quick to judge others and their actions? Am I non-accepting of other people? Or do I love others where they are?
Am I anti-this and anti-that? Or do I listen and share my views in a loving, non-condescending, relatable way?
What kind of example am I for my children, my co-workers, my extended family, my friends? Because of my example, would they want a life with Jesus?
Do I speak “Christianese,” quoting the Bible as much as I can in conversations, and hitting others over the head with it? Or do I speak in love, through words others understand, showing the love of Jesus?
Do I walk away from those who live or believe different than me? Or do my actions speak louder than my words?
Do I forgive, restore, bless, teach, love, nurture, pray for, and extend hope to others, like Jesus did?
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35
How are we doing at loving one another? Is our love evident?
I love Jesus with all of my not-so-perfect self. I am continually amazed He loves this mess named Julie. Because of this, and because of what He’s done for me, my heart’s desire is to represent Him well and to reflect all He is.
That’s a tall order. I may never accomplish it, but nonetheless, that’s my desire.
If these words help you to look deeper today too, I’m praying Jesus meets you right where you are, and encourages your heart in the ways only He can.
It’s Wednesday where we encourage each other, Woman to Woman. May we each dig a little deeper and ask some tough questions today.
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