Choose Love
A few years ago, we went to Easter service. By my side was someone I dearly love. She was new to church and hadn’t grown up with all the church lingo. I was singing the Easter songs with all my heart – then I realized she probably had no clue what the songs meant and was likely totally thrown off and confused by all the “blood of Jesus” wording. I stopped singing. I leaned over and began explaining the lyrics to her. As they repeated, I began to sing again, then did the same with the next songs. It became a favorite worship experience for both of us.
I’ve invited so many people to Easter services. It’s a time when people’s hearts are naturally more tender and open to Jesus and the Gospel message and let’s be real, many people feel the “I should go” (sometimes out of guilt) nudge on this holiday.
If they aren’t “churched” people, it can feel like they’re listening to a foreign language as we sing and talk in “Christian-ese.” If they’ve grown up in church and are just coming because they feel they “should,” the words used can often trigger past church hurts, whether by church leadership or professing Christians.
I had a friend reach out to me yesterday to ask me what I thought about the “Steven Furtick / Elevation Church Easter Scandal” (my words, not hers). Thankfully, I hadn’t even heard about it. My response to her was this:
“How would Jesus invite people to church? Would He use "come and see" language (to quote ‘The Chosen’) or hit them immediately with language they might find offensive that would keep them from coming? I think a religious spirit likes to stir things up and cause division and draw attention away from what's really important to His heart - the people He loves and drawing them to Him. Jesus didn't hold back from saying what needed to be said once people were in His presence. I think this was an opportunity to stir up dissension. Those are my opinions and thoughts.”
Wouldn’t you know it? A great post by Joshua Reyes came across my feed later on and it was on the very topic my friend had asked about. My favorite thing Joshua said was, “People have lost their minds throwing accusations and calling for repentance because a church graphic doesn't include certain words. Y'all are messy and this is why nobody takes Christianity serious. People out here causing a stir over pettiness.”
Why??? Why do we do this? We’re called to be a united body in Christ, yet no one is better at throwing people under the bus, shooting their wounded, judging, and condemning than Christians! Yes, I’m fired up and yes, I’m angry – the Jesus turning over tables in the temple kind of angry.
We’ve got to stop this!
We need to listen to understand.
We need to LOVE like Jesus.
We need to stop dying on the hill of religion and live the life of freedom Christ died for us to live!
I WILL make Jesus relatable because I WILL give my life to bring people into encounter with the One who loves them deeply. That means I’m intentional about not using all kinds of religious wording as I connect heart-to-heart with people. As I reveal the loving heart of the Father, I’m going to use words that will mean something to the hearers. That’s exactly what Jesus did, and it was often through storytelling.
Does that mean I don’t share the message of the cross, the resurrection, and the blood of Jesus? Absolutely not! It just means that when I share about those things, it’s in a way others can embrace it, rather than run from it in confusion, shame, or condemnation.
Church, we’ve GOT TO do better! Knock off all the drama. Stop fixating on things that draw people away from God and make them want to run in the other direction because they refuse to get pulled into that kind of mess. (Who can blame them?) Put down your denominational religiosity and live like Jesus, doing only what you see your heavenly Father doing (John 5:19-20).
By the way . . . today is Maundy Thursday. This is the day when we remember how Jesus humbled Himself and washed the disciples’ feet only hours before He was arrested and condemned to die for our sake. He did it with joy filling His heart because He knew His suffering and death would bring our redemption and would restore to us the relationship the Father longed to have with us once again.
This Easter, live its message. If you’re one who needs to, lay down the legalistic “should / have to / must” yoke you put on yourself, your family, and others. Speak plainly about Jesus, God, and Holy Spirit. Draw people to His heart. Let all the other drama go – whether it’s about wording on a flyer or any other number of opportunities we have to be hateful. 

Choose love, and if you need to, turn over some tables to make things right.

Living for Him,

P.S. The anonymous quote graphic was created by Roma Waterman. She compiled her favorite Easter quotes and offered them as a gift to enjoy and share with others. 

P.P.S. Brian and I are launching out more in the ministry realm, including me writing more and Brian working to end sex trafficking. If you would like to support us by "buying us a coffee," please click the link below (more information is included on the page), and thank you for partnering with us!

Our Mission: Love Others Well & Empower Them to Do the Same


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