For my own mental health, I have stopped paying attention to the news, I’ve stopped posting or engaging on Facebook unless it’s neutral, safe things like “look at Harper’s cute baby face!” and I’m not turning on the TV. Some might call that hiding, but I call if self-preservation.
But here’s what I would whisper to my friends from the sidelines of all the fighting about the Women’s March and the pro-life issue so many people seem to be fixated on:
You realize the Devil is enjoying this, right?
He LOVES that you’re fighting about one single issue and are willing to lose friendships, family members, and neighbors over it. He is laughing hysterically at this diversion he’s created. Because what is better than dividing people? What is better than alienating? What fills him up more than when people are rude, full of righteous indignation, and fury?
He’s eating this up.
And I think we’re all just breaking Jesus’ heart.
So nice work, people of the Church. We’re telling about the love of Jesus and his grace and forgiveness and how TRANSFORMING life can be with Him while bashing people. I can’t recall the exact scripture at this moment, but I’m sure there are a few stories in the Bible where disciples do this exact same thing and suddenly everyone changes their minds and their hearts and drops to their feet begging to be taught the good and holy way.
Actually, now that I think about it, maybe that’s not there.
You know the only person able to change someone’s heart? Jesus.
So show the people you don’t agree with JESUS. Not your mouth, not your intellect, not your right answers. SHOW THEM JESUS.
Damn it, people. No wonder churches are dying out and less and less people claim the name of Jesus. Look what we’re doing to ourselves. Look how we represent our God. Aren’t we embarrassed yet?
I was in the chaos of moving on Saturday or I would have been downtown Indianapolis marching with my city. I would have taken my daughters and I would have asked my husband to come too. Not because I believe every single thing the march stood for, but because I know the women (and men) present there were hurting, scared, worried, and anxious. AND IT DOESN’T MATTER ABOUT WHAT. Those are things we can help with. Those are things we have answers to. We know someone who can handle all of that and bring peace and understanding like no one’s business.
Why in the world would we avoid something like that? Isn’t that where we’re supposed to be?
And if it all comes back to Jesus and what we know of Him through the Bible (or a personal relationship with him), I know for a FACT that Jesus showed up where people were hurting. He didn’t tell them how wrong they were or point out the bad choices they’d made that led to this point. He never told us to shame someone into changing or mock the people that don’t believe the same as you.
We were all lost and had to be found. Why are we so hateful to someone who is still lost?
It doesn’t matter if they think they’re lost or not. If you’re a Jesus follower and you accept the Bible as the final authority–people are lost. When you decided to become a Christian, you took on the heart of Jesus and his heart is for the lost.
So maybe instead of sharing snarky things on Facebook, maybe instead of tweeting how wrong or nasty or disgusting you think someone is, you should change your narrative. Don’t worry about changing others, let’s work on ourselves first. What in your heart needs some shifting and correction? Ask God to help you love someone you don’t agree with because the ONLY way we can bring others to our great God is through relationship. So if you’re burning bridges with everyone who looks or thinks or shares differently than you, you’re working right into the Devil’s plan. He is deceitful. He is conniving. And he is in the middle of this debate eating it up.
One more thing before I go: Yes, I’m pro-life. Thanks for asking. But before you applaud or condemn me for that position, I want to make sure you know how pro-life works in my life. If I say I’m pro-life, I’m all in. That means I’m for social services that help mothers support those babies we don’t want them to kill. I’m for programs that help feed them and clothe them and get them health services. I’m for school policies that make sure all those kids that we convinced moms to have get a good education. I’m for more and easier adoptions. I’m for paid maternity leave, and I’m for programs that teach people how to do life better. I’m with the it-takes-a-community group. If we ask scared pregnant girls and women to stop killing babies, we need to make it easier for them to say yes. We need to show them it’s better to keep a baby than to get rid of it. If you’re pro-life and you’re against all those programs, I’m not sure what to tell you. How do we change the abortion conversation without providing better answers? And yes, you can just say Jesus, but Jesus wants you do to something. And I don’t think it’s just save all these babies so they can grow up poor, hungry, and uneducated. (Oh, and also: you know you more than likely go to church with someone who’s had an abortion, right? Without realizing it, you probably have people in your life right now who have had abortions. Can we stop pretending it’s just “others” that do this? We’re all the same. Yes, we know Jesus and that changes us, but we’re all the same too.)