I’m on the struggle bus with something that is so unpopular in todays world. It is a simple yet complex topic and the most important one that Paul talks about in Ephesians through the armor of God. It is Truth! I am in a complete whirlwind with the truth. We are saturated daily with news of backlash against people in leadership, diminishing values that date back ages and boundaries that continue fading into the abyss. Speaking truth in love isn’t something that just sounds good but something that God commands us to do. But how do we speak truth with love in a world that is offended by God’s truth?
I will be honest, I have typed and deleted this blog about 6 times because it is a tough topic to handle. I am new to this Christian life and I feel like an eager college student that has found a passion, jumped in with both feet, determined to learn as she goes. My list of questions is long and complicated. This world is filled with bad news and opposition and being ok with the truth is becoming harder and harder. Each day I can feel the truth we read in the bible becoming less acceptable while the truth of Cosmopolitan magazine becoming more acceptable. It is hard to stay calm when I see constant activity that I know by Gods standards, leads to destruction. I know I am commanded to love but I also know my greatest example is Jesus. So, what in the world are we to do?
I went to the bible for guidance and that made it even more confusing. I know that Jesus loved everyone he met, but he also didn’t stray from telling them the truth in fear of being “unfollowed”. I find myself silenced or curving what I know to be true because I fear being viewed as judgmental. No one in their right mind desires intentionally hurting anyone’s feelings. I love people so much and I have friends living in all different lifestyles. I don’t love any of them less because it isn’t my lifestyle. I wrote a few blogs ago about my neighbors who are atheist liberals. You can imagine how different our views are, but I genuinely LOVE THEM!! I don’t feel an obligation to force my views on them, but I also would not veer from my beliefs during a conversation.
Social media has made this path even more difficult because years ago, we didn’t speak openly about our political agenda and there were still boundaries in place. With social media, we have no filter on what people are posting and everyone’s opinions and beliefs are plastered for all to see (mine included). Personally, what I am seeing is that Christians are now walking in silence in the name of love, because anytime we speak, we are offending someone. Listen Y’all! I hate truth bombs more than the next person. It is not easy to hear the truth about the sin in our personal lives.
When I was drinking heavy and living in a fully selfish lifestyle, I hated when my family told me I was being destructive, influencing my children negatively. I hated hearing that they didn’t think I shouldn’t have a live-in boyfriend because it really rained on my parade. It was hard to hear truth about my lifestyle but if they weren’t going to tell me what I was doing was wrong, no one else was either. I had ONE friend that entire time that wrote me a letter and totally put me in my spot. I was so angry at her but looking back, she loved me enough to not care because she knew I needed to hear it.
So, we know we are commanded to speak truth with Love and what I have wondered is if when that was commanded, what was intended was that we speak truth to those we love because we love them. It isn’t referring to a tone of love or an excuse for silence in fear of being offensive. I love how Jesus never talked down to people and reminded us all that we are full of sin, but he ALWAYS stood on truth. He was never worried about his popularity or how many “followers” (pun intended) he had because he trusted God to protect him and he knew his allegiance was to his father first before men.
So, the best I have concluded is that I will continue to pray for Gods wisdom and gentleness, but I will ask he would create a BOLDNESS inside of me as well. That my actions would always be loving no matter who I am surrounded by but that I would never ever shy away from his truth in fear of losing followers. I love following super popular social media influencers. But when you step back and listen to what they speak, they appeal to all people and accept all behaviors because their worldly following is what is most important. I just can’t make it make sense inside my brain that God would give us his word and a voice if all he wanted from us was to be super accepting of all things without boundaries.
I suppose I still have so much to pray through and maybe I will never know or understand the clear answer, but I know he gifted me with a love for people. So, I will continue praying other would feel Gods love through me and that when my passion is construed as judgment that God would adjust it.
In a world where the number of followers matters, I wonder how many people would unfollow Jesus if he had a social media account? The bigger question is, would he shift his focus to get them back?