Sunday, February 14, 2010

Mercenary Christians

Good Afternoon

Our small corner of the world has caught the fad (and I hope it's a passing one!) of the backlit signs upon which a business, church or whatever can post thought-provoking, or even idiotic messages, and sometimes their business or worship service schedules. I really think they may be traffic hazards as one is tempted to read them while driving.


I managed to read the sign posted outside of one of our local denominations, and it is sitting like a burr under the saddle.

"Respect people. It comes back"

We are made, all of us, in the image and likeness of God. We are all due respect for that, if for nothing else. As Christians, we are to remember this even if the person being respected does not recognize their own value as human beings.

We are to see Christ in everyone. Sometimes it will be Christ suffering we see, but we still must see Him somehow.

While it may be true that respecting people will 'come back' in the sense that we will be respected for the respect we pay others, this should never be the reason we do it.

It should be for Christ that we do it. Remember "Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me".

Matthew 5:43-47 tells us that if we love only those who love us back, we are no better than a pagan, or a publican (depends which bible you're reading). Anyone can love someone who loves (or respects) him back.

We are called to more. Mother Teresa was, in my thoughts, a good example. She cared for those who could offer her little or nothing in return. These people were often very close to death when coming into her care. Yet she and her sisters worked joyfully with them. In fact reading some of Mother Teresa's writings and writings about her one gets the impression that she found a lot of the recognition she received to be a nuisance.

Yes, respect may come back to us as we cast it out, but to a Christian, whether or not respect comes back is irrelevant.

God Bless

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