We are so easily distracted by our differences. We focus in on the things about people or groups that contradict our preferences and choices. We want things to be comfortable and familiar in order to meet what we believe our needs and expectations are. Depth is too often sacrificed at the altar of the familiar.
When I am afforded the opportunity to serve in the community, there is a wide spectrum of personalities available for interaction. Some, by their dress, hygiene, behavior or other choices are easy to spot as “weird.” They are well positioned for my rejection if I choose as they have been rejected plenty in their past.
The problem is that if I choose to judge based on those things that they are showing in an initial confrontation, then I am doing so at the expense of ever knowing who they actually are. If those things that would be deemed “weird” are contradictory with the identity God created for them, then I have bought the same lies that they have. In fact, in those instances, I have come in agreement with the enemy and reinforced the destructive lies which have manifest in their lives.
God doesn’t love you or me more than He loves “them.” He had the same plans and purposes them all of us. He designed us to be His kids and He desires that we each know His saving grace.
They were simply hijacked. The addictions, confusion, convictions or other aberrations were never the design of their purpose any more than it was yours or mine. The train came off the tracks and we are staring at the wreckage.
Ever been off the tracks? Maybe it didn’t lead to homelessness or incarceration, but have you ever allowed one bad decision to pile upon another consequence to the point that you were clearly outside of the plan? If so, and I would submit that it is so, aren’t you glad that some Christian passer-by didn’t look at your circumstances and call you a wreck? It wouldn’t have to have necessarily been spoken or explicit, although it often is, it could be with a glance or another form of rejection.
“Then a despised Samaritan came along, and when he saw the man, he felt compassion for him. Going over to him, the Samaritan soothed his wounds with olive oil and wine and bandaged them. Then he put the man on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins, telling him, ‘Take care of this man. If his bill runs higher than this, I’ll pay you the next time I’m here.” Luke 10: 35-37.