Monday, January 5, 2009

We've got to give a little love...

Tolerance. It makes all the difference.

It doesn’t matter what area – religious, social, political, favorite flavor of gummy bear, whatever – but just because I think it, doesn’t necessarily make it right. Even if I AM right, respecting the opinions of others is crucial (except in football. or if the person is closed-minded).

“Who am I to judge another When I walk imperfectly?” (Lord, I Would Follow Thee,” Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, no. 220) Who am I to say, “This person is worthy of my presence, but this person is someone I should avoid,” and feel justified in that decision? Christ associated with publicans and sinners, am I greater than He?

Of course not.

Few things frustrate me more than a person who refuses to see beyond their own mindset. Someone who passes judgment concerning the imperfections of others and deems them unworthy of association. “I’ve been told to avoid befriending unrighteous people because they’ll lead me into temptation.” What a pitiful excuse. If you’re going to avoid sin, good luck making friends. We all sin. That’s a fact. Who gets to decide which sins make a person “unworthy”? Not you. Not me. Also, if being around an imperfect person is going to make your testimony or strength waver, you obviously weren’t too strong in the first place. If you know who you are and what you stand for, the actions of others aren’t going to affect that. You don’t have to become like them. You don’t even have to like them. But you do have to show some Christ-like humility and realize that you are no better than they are.

I know I’m guilty of being judgmental at times. So I’m going to let my frustration with intolerance motivate me to be more accepting.

If Christ deems someone worthy of His time and love, that person is definitely worthy of ours.

And He loves everyone.

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