I saw a post on Justin Bieber’s Instagram the other day. Oh, you didn’t know I am a fan? Well, I am. Not in a creepy sort of way, but more in a mom sort of way. I have great compassion for the little boy who was thrown into fame much too young…and I also am naches of the man he is becoming.
What the heck is naches?
Naches is a Hebrew word that sort of means proud. We just don’t have a word in the English language for it. It’s not a negative sort of pride, but more a feeling of happiness for someone in a parental way. So, I’ve decided to adopt this Hebrew word…and you all get to read it in my writing.
Back to Biebs
His post made a point about Christianity that I honestly could not deny.
Over my own years as a Christian I have seen Christianity change. Not Jesus, He never changes, but rather how we view ourselves as Christians. As I pondered this I realized that it’s not just Christians and Christianity that have gotten it wrong…humans and humanity have gotten it wrong. We have spent years hating and striving and focusing on everything we shouldn’t be focused on. So, it’s not that Christians are the ones who have screwed up, we all have. But I’d like to address this issue within Christianity for the purpose of this blog.
So, where should our focus be?
Jesus was quite clear that as Christians, people who follow and live to emulate Christ, we are to do two things first and foremost.
- Love God.
- Love people.
At times I feel as though we have epically failed. Don’t get me wrong, I fully understand that I cannot expect people who do not follow Christ to love Him, or people. But for those who claim to be His followers this is most definitely an expectation. Yet, we tend to forget the love people part, or at least ignore it.
Often, those of us who have been Christians for most of our lives sit back in our chairs and point our fingers at those who are new to this faith in Christ – and we judge how they do it. But following Justin on Instagram has shown me a thing or two.
He is not shy with his faith.
It doesn’t matter that he may not have all the answers, or that he may not get it right all the time. He is simply pointing to Christ and telling others to go meet Him. That is exactly what we should all be doing! We don’t need to know a single thing about who they are, what they do or how they live. We just need to tell them that Jesus loves them. Because He does. He died for them, just like He died for you and for me.
I have also seen Biebs love and honor people.
When it is trendy to hate on or laugh at people I’ve watched him honor.
And there’s a reward for those who honor.
I have done a teaching on Ruth and Naomi and the relationship they had. The younger and older in relationship with each other. Learning from each other. That relationship worked out well for both women. They both were greatly blessed by the other. We can also learn from each other. Our age, the length of time we’ve been following Jesus, our background…these things don’t always determine the sharpness of the knife. Let iron sharpen iron. When you see good fruit pick it. I could say this so many ways. My point is, we should see those who are getting it right in an area and learn from them.
Am I saying I think that Justin Bieber has it all down pat? No. But neither do I. And neither do you. And when I see fruit that looks good I’ll take it to the Word of God and see if it is indeed healthy. There are some areas I’ve nailed it, and others I haven’t quite figured out. But I honestly want to figure it out.
So I will try to be less judgemental – oh, I will still hold everything up to the Word of God. I will still hold those accountable whom I have earned that right with. I will try to love God more by spending more time in His Word – where I can learn who He has called me to be. I will try to love people more by putting the Word to work in my life. I need His help everyday to be the person He made me to be.
Lord, will You help us to love you well? Will You help us to love other people without the filters we try to apply? Help us to just love and point to You…even when we don’t have all the answers…even when we don’t get it all right. Help us to love.
Jesus replied: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.Matthew 22:37-40