So...  The Supreme Court.  Marriage.  You know what I'm talking about.  Most people seem to have an opinion (voiced loudly) or nothing to say at all.  Shouting or silence.  I hope to fall somewhere in between, talking and discussing.   Over the past few days, I've had some time to think amidst the responsibilities and joys of life.  Three main ideas keep coming to mind...

1.     R-E-S-P-E-C-T.  Regardless of where you stand, I think we all want to be respected (I know I do!).  The Internet can be a nasty place.  This week, I've seen more arguing and hateful comments than I have in a long time– from both and multiple viewpoints.  The part that's especially sad to me is that some of these people are Christians.  It's one thing (a good one, I might add) to know what you believe and stand up for it.  It's another (this time not so good) to be insensitive and disrespectful.  It's easy to sit behind a screen and hit "send" without thinking about how your words will be received... or more importantly who will receive them.

2.     F-O-R.  There's not a song to go with this one (thanks, Aretha Franklin;), but it's important nonetheless.  I would dare to say a greater impact is made when we stand up for what we believe in instead of listing what we're against.  I am for: God's design for marriage.  The love of Jesus that changes.  The Gospel that continually transforms.  God's clear & true Word despite my initial or popular opinion.  Loving others in a way that shows what I believe.  Sharing the Truth in love.  Which brings me to one final conclusion...

3.     L-O-V-E.  This seems to be the word of the week.  I believe that God is a God of love.  You're homosexual?  Loved.  You've been married for 30 years? Loved.  Recently divorced?  Loved.  You're a Democrat?  Republican?  Loved.  You're a successful businessman?  Loved.  You're barely making it to tomorrow?  You're loved, too.  God's love, though, is not an excuse.  Instead, His love calls us and changes us and makes. us. new.  It doesn't leave us in our old ways.  His love changes us and disciplines us because His way (The Way) is the best way.  It causes us to repent and desire purity and run after the One who fulfills us above all else.  Are we to continue in sin– any sin– that grace may abound?  By no means!  Let's love like Jesus.  May my life, words, and actions, display this love.

I hope this will encourage you to pray or think or look at your life in the same way I've been challenged.   In all of this, I pray that followers of Christ would be hopeful and not discouraged & bold and not ashamed– all with great grace.  That we would know love and how to love in a deeper way that glorifies Jesus and points others to Him.

PS: I found another article online that was thought-provoking, encouraging, and practical... Read it here.

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