BIG & TALL love…

Posted: December 4, 2014 in fizzy faith

Okay, completely true story…several years ago, a good friend and I were hanging out at a mall. It was a lazy summer night and we were just killing time. We wandered into a big and tall store. Almost immediately we were approached by a loud salesman with perfectly coiffed hair. He said “hello, may I helpppp…WHOA!” The immaculately dressed man looked me up & down with a sour look on his face. After viewing my 5 foot tall self, he said in equal parts shock & disgust: “EWWWW….we don’t have anything for people like YOU!” At first I thought it was a really awkward attempt at humor. But noooo! He was serious. I could feel my ears turn red as I felt the sting of his rejection. He just gave me a constipated stare until I walked out of his store. I just walked away, befuddled and bruised, even now my face starts to twitch a little every time I walk past a big and tall store or section.

It is a painful thing to be labeled as “other”, to be confronted with the ugly truth that there’s no room in the room for you.

Speaking of ugly truth, we, as the organized church have been communicating “EWWWW….we don’t have anything for people like YOU!” to a lot of people, people who don’t look like us or act like us or talk like us. They have rough edges. They made questionable choices and they’re not quiet about it. We have made it clear that they can’t be a part of our club and they have walked away with the scar tissue of rejection on their souls. We have traditionally stared down the untraditional until they’ve left the building.

They have walked away, befuddled and bruised, and they start to twitch when someone mentions church.

But, I don’t remember Jesus ever saying “EWWWW….we don’t have anything for people like YOU!” In fact, I see him saying things like: “Come to Me, ALL who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

So the invitation to find rest, hope and peace in the person of Jesus is for ALL. that seems pretty clear…seems like it includes people like me…people like YOU.

God help us…

Father, please forgive us for misrepresenting you.

We repent of slapping your name on our prejudices and preferences.

To the people stung by the religious rejection of “EWWWW….we don’t have anything for people like YOU!” Please forgive us for making you feel like there’s no room in the room for you.

As the church of the living & loving God, we have something for people like YOU….no matter who you are.

We have…hope…grace…forgiveness….rest…love…for…YOU…yes, YOU.

When it comes to earning our way into heaven or manufacturing hope we are all in the same boat. We are ALL people like US in need of a God like HIM.

  1. Cheryl says:

    I agree we are to love everyone and draw them to Jesus. I struggle with where do we draw the line between condoning sinful behavior and rejecting people. It is such a balancing act. We love them, we want them to know Him, but do we overlook the sin – whatever it may be? We are all sinners, it is true. How do we convey the truth of God’s word if part of that truth says their behavior is sin? Just thinking out loud…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Luke Lang says:

    great question Cheryl. thank you!! we can’t condone sin, but I think it is a matter of accepting people for WHO they are, instead of WHAT they do. love is the rule. we should be honest about what God has done and is doing in our lives. speak the truth in love, let our stories speak and let the Holy Spirit do the work of collecting & cleansing.


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