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.
Loving God, loving others. May we be known by our love.
It’s Wednesday where we encourage each other, Woman to Woman. May we each dig a little deeper and ask some tough questions today.
Linking up with Meredith for Woman to Woman, Beth for Three Word Wednesday, and Holley for Coffee For Your Heart.
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Awww…love that photo! Also love your message and example for others!
I thought you might love that photo. I’ve been wanting to use it for a while now! So cute! You know as well as I do I’ve been closed-minded and critical in the past. Thank you and Pat for putting up with me all these years! I appreciate your encouragement, Stacie. Love you guys!
These are all such good questions to ask ourselves, Julie. I can tell you that YOU ARE loving God and loving others through your words AND your life. You would have so much less of a testimony if you were doing it perfect, as would we all. 😉 Thank you for being so real in this place and ALWAYS leading us back to the cross. Bless you and thank you for your encouragement. xoxo, Meredith
Meredith, thank you. I would love to spend a morning sitting across the table from you over coffee, encouraging each other in life. Maybe some day we’ll get that opportunity. Until then, I’m thankful I get to do life with you. I thank you for your words of encouragement. When God puts something big on your heart, it’s sometimes hard to put it into words like this post. Thanks for hosting the link up! God bless you today as you continue to love Him and love others! Hugs!
Looking deeper with you, Julie. Such good questions to ask ourselves and ones we should ask ourselves regularly. I’m at the airport and using iPad which just doesn’t work for me so keeping comments short. Great post! Thank you for sharing with TWW. Much love.
Hi Beth! Thank you for stopping in while at the airport, and for hosting TWW! You’re a blessing to many, including me! Have a great week!
Yes! I want to be known by my love. Not the word love, but the action love!
Amen! Me too, Sarah! Thank you for coming by and sharing!