Working at a camp to help my friend this week we are doing different words that are used to promote good sportsmanship and character. I figured, I might as well use them for my blog as well.
Accept is the word of the day today. And sitting here working on it trying to put something together, I’m thinking about it as an adult. The things we don’t want to see past, the efforts we don’t want to make, and it really was a “pot calling the kettle effect” happening. I’m trying to teach kids what some adults still refuse to learn and do.
It’s interesting in our personal lives the things we won’t accept. I understand not accepting things that aren’t right. Things that go against Christian beliefs and so forth. But things like not accepting a person due to race, sex, or socioeconomic background is something that isn’t right.
It just so happens that recently I’ve been reading Acts, and there’s a piece in there when the Gentiles first receive the Gospel and it’s a bit of an uproar. One of my favorite lessons comes from this piece though, and Peter basically says why are we holding such high standards for people to have to reach and obtain to be able to have a relationship with God that we couldn’t even keep ourselves as Jews. We have this Jewish law and custom and we’re saying these people have not upheld this therefore they shouldn’t get to know God and we haven’t done it ourselves.
Acceptance requires work. And it definitely should be something that you want to be able to offer other people. As Christians we have to work harder at accepting people for who they are because God does. God welcomes you as you are, and if you’re going to wait until you get some stuff together before you come to Him, then you’re never going to be ready to come. God is willing to accept us, and we need to be willing to accept others too. That’s not saying be a mess and stay one and let people be that, but it is saying reach out in acceptance.
When you see people who are struggling and they’re genuinely trying, don’t put the highest of standards on these people. Sometimes, it is taking all they’ve got to just come. Accept them as God would, after all, He did accept you.
Acts 10:34-35 New Living Translation (NLT)
34 Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God shows no favoritism. 35 In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.
Acts 15:10 New Living Translation (NLT)
10 So why are you now challenging God by burdening the Gentile believers with a yoke that neither we nor our ancestors were able to bear?