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This week’s note from Rev. Bill

I HAVE BEEN WRONG – 

 

               There was some debate recently about a post I put on Facebook, referencing the “He Gets Us” ads that were shown during the Superbowl. These ads feature people washing another person’s feet – usually divergent social groups or classes. Transgender, someone at an abortion clinic, minorities, homeless, police officers, migrants – each scene shows someone taking a step to give an act of love and service to another. 

               I had posted that I appreciated these commercials, and the attempts made to represent Jesus as spreading love, not hate. 

               Yet there were various persons who objected to my lifting up these commercials – according to some, they believe that the group behind these ads is a “bait and switch” company that is trying to promote religious groups that do NOT welcome minorities, gays, or people of different nationalities. And I have also found out that there are conservative Christian groups who also object to these ads – because they represent people that they are against!

               So where does that leave me? I believe the message is right – Jesus understands life; Jesus gets us; Jesus practiced a radical hospitality that goes beyond the surface. This is a message worth sharing with broken and hurting people worldwide. This is a message of truth.

               But what if the group sharing this message also shares things I disagree with? Truthfully, I have not been able to find credible evidence that they deliberately support “hate” groups – but what if they do? 

               That’s a serious allegation. I don’t want to be a part of anyone who is spreading lies about Jesus. That’s why I have to look at myself and see what my motivations are.                           

               Here’s the rub – I HAVE BEEN WRONG IN THE PAST. There was a time when I spoke strongly against gays, women’s rights, welcoming migrants. AND I WAS WRONG. I am grateful for people who had patience with me in my ignorance. It took time, and there were many people whom I offended over the years. 

               But Jesus didn’t give up on me. Jesus has taught me that I can grow. The truth is, I’m still not perfect even yet! I still have attitudes and habits that do not honor Him. So I pray that Jesus would continue to send people into my life who will help me to become more like Him.

               If it’s true that some groups who are supporting this “He Gets Us” message are doing so out of impure motives, they will have to answer to God for that. But I also believe that, if they keep spreading the message of love and service, the Holy Spirit will convict them. They will either have to stop spreading the message of love, or start to live it out!

               I believe that because it happened to me. The more I proclaimed Jesus as loving and accepting of everyone, the more the Holy Spirit convicted me in the areas where I was living a different message. 

               I’m still growing. I have been wrong. But I’m trying to let Jesus mold me into what He needs to bring hope and healing to this world. 

 

 

  • Rev. Bill
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