Last week a friend texted me from the airport. She was waiting at the gate and among the passengers was a church group headed to Guatemala.
Her text read,
“A group of ‘Christians’ are heading to Guatemala. And they are BASHING Catholics. My first instinct was to ask, WWMAD?”
My response to her “what would MA do” question was,
First, I’d pray that they’d understand the harm they’re doing when they behave like that, publicly or otherwise. And then I’d loudly hum ‘They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love’
For pete’s sake. You’d think that after having Christ Himself come down to earth as God’s representative the Christian community wouldn’t have a PR problem. And yet, I feel like every time I look around I’m ashamed to self-identify with His followers.
I’m not talking about the professional meanies – Westboro Baptist I’m looking at you. I’m talking about regular, every day folks that unleash torrents of spew just for fun. Do they think they’re being witty? Clever? Do they remember that when defining love Paul lists “kindness” as the second characteristic?
Do they have any idea the trouble they’re causing when they behave this way? How many people are they keeping from exploring the height and depth and breadth of the love of God because of their thoughtless, mean comments and behavior?
Dallas Willard said, “discipleship can be made concrete by loving our enemies, blessing those who curse us, walking the second mile with an oppressor – in general, living out the gracious inward transformations of faith, hope, and love.” So, I must ask… WHY are they so mean spirited? They have experienced grace at its fullest, at its most holy, at its most mysterious. Have they forgotten what its like to be shown kindness? We’re supposed to be salt and light … Not salty.
Look, I get it. We’re human. There’s no way I’d be mistaken as a poster child for Christianity. But if you’re going to walk around an airport wearing a T-shirt blazing that your do-gooder status is in the name of Christ, could you please remember that at that moment you are representing a lot more than your personal opinion?