It is so easy for some believers to point out others' wrongdoings and make sure they are told that continuing in this behavior will lead to hell and damnation instead of having a curious, courageous, and love-filled conversation. Whether we choose to admit it or not, we all want one common thing to be heard and acknowledged. As believers, we were given that gift when we gave our lives to God through Christ. As receivers of this gift, we should freely and gladly share it in the same manner. As Jesus did, have a conversation with others, and be curious about their story. Ask them to share and ask God to give you the ability to hear their hearts. Listen with the intent to understand and connect. Allow them to see God's love by your gracious curiosity. I have seen many people leave the church because of righteous's hypocrisy, or should we call them Pharisees, the ones that have forgotten the purpose of the good news. Mark 2: 15-17 states, "While Jesus was having dinner at Levi's house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. When the teacher of the law, who were Pharisees, saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners? On hearing this, Jesus said to them that it is not the healthy who needs a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners." At some point along the way, some believers forgot to proclaim the good news and not close the door of their hearts and the church to people who need them the most. God calls us to love even when we disagree and pray when we feel superior or are standing in judgment.
I have had to take a hard look at myself lately. I say I want to love like Jesus, but I still end up judging like Denese. So, God took me to Psalm 139: 23-24 "Search me, oh God, and know my heart test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting." I encourage you to live life with a child's curiosity. To love each person, you meet as a family member; this includes the murderer, the pedophile, the drug dealer, the prostitute, and people who live a different lifestyle. A conversation with love can plant a seed of love and a curiosity to seek the source of love.
On the other hand, a conversation with judgment and condemnation can widen the divide. Remember God's word states in John 13:55, "By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another," It does not state to love only the ones you deem worthy of love. John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
Remember, God loves all the whosoever wills of the world, I am striving to, I invite you to join.