I interact with a lot of different people in real-time, online, through blogs and forums, and through this blog. Many of these people are not believers in Jesus Christ; they are not “saved.”
Many of these people are atheist, New Age, Islāmic, Catholic, Satanist, have faith in other religions, or simply call themselves “non-religious.” Some of the people I interact with are spiritual but don’t believe what the bible says, as I do.
Unfortunately, there is often what I would call a “great divide” between myself and these people within my mind, if not theirs. It’s because we are living our lives based upon a different way in how we perceive of reality. This can be challenging when it comes to communication, insight into one another, and the ability to create a friendship. It can make it hard to find things in common with each other.
When I’m able to find even a little space to meet in the middle with those whom I differ, I often feel like celebrating because I feel as if we’re finally really “connecting.” I am able to feel closer to them. I sincerely like and care about these others with whom I differ, regardless of their spirituality or lack thereof. When I look at the behavior of Jesus Christ, I recognize that Jesus was able to love and interact with people whom he had very little in common with. He ate dinner with tax collectors and prostitutes; these “sinners” were often his companions. His own disciples didn’t understand and questioned His behavior.
I think being able to truly love others is imperative if we’re going to ever get their respect enough to even begin to discuss our faith with them. And I believe that the non-believer in Jesus Christ knows who really loves and respects him and who doesn’t; he recognizes who is sincere and who is just mouthing platitudes. People were drawn to Jesus when He walked this earth because He was/is real. There is nothing fake about the love He had/has for them.
We have to be the same way with others. We have to be able to cross that great divide somehow. We have to meet others where they live, not peer down from lofty Christian perches and think that we will somehow be able to break through. We are to be in the world but not of the world, but this doesn’t mean that we should be so far removed from the world that we can’t even relate to other people anymore. How does someone witness Christ Jesus if they can’t even communicate with another person who doesn’t believe?
I love connecting with others, despite our differences in what we believe spiritually. I like to find ways that we can connect. This connecting makes anything possible, and even if we never connect spiritually speaking, I want the people whom I love, who don’t believe, to know that they matter to me deeply. I want them to know that they are admired and respected, and that I value their acquaintance or friendship, even if they don’t believe in the same way that I do.
- Are You Promoting The Truth Or A Bunch Of Confusion? (pastorpaulvbsblog.blogspot.com)
- LIFE FROM ABOVE – a lesson from a spider (meetingintheclouds.wordpress.com)
- What Jesus taught me in Matthew (georgehachmyblog.wordpress.com)