Mean. Right there in front of his Bible-study friends, me and all the other coffee shop patrons—many who may not have been Christians. And probably aren’t motivated anymore to be one now.
I was embarrassed.
I’ve had some restaurant people tell me the “church hour”—after the churches finish on Sunday—is one of the hardest hours of their week. Really? That’s sad. I would hope it’d be the opposite.
How’s that for having the mind of Christ? Or being witnesses? Or considering others better than ourselves?
Whenever I’ve asked, well over three-fourths of my blog readers identify themselves as believers. So, if you’re in the one fourth who doesn’t claim Christianity, this post isn’t for you. Sorry about that, but today I’m only addressing the “family.” We call ourselves brothers and sisters. In love, we sometimes gently rebuke one another. That’s what families do.
So, brothers and sisters. Quit being mean.
Consider what you say and the way you say it before you ever say it.
That sounds logical. Biblical. A good discipline even.
Because I can fall into a culture that thinks more about myself than others too. You can too. We all can. We can value our opinion, consider others without our opinion wrong, and talk to people who we know are wrong like they are less human because of it. Sometimes we treat members of our family—people we love—worse than we treat a stranger. I get that.
But when we are mean, it flies in the face of what Christians are taught to do—in the Bible we claim as our guide. And, it’s the kindness of God that leads to repentance. To my knowledge, no one ever comes to faith through meanness. Or watching someone be mean to others.
In fact, there is no “meanness” of God. God is love—even when He’s sharing truth.
And, we are to be like Him. At least becoming more like Him.
So this is an encouragement. A simple striving to be nice, non-mean intentioned, encouragement.
Let’s clean up our act. Or, to put it in my Christian-like terms—let’s let Jesus clean up our act. Let’s be more like our Savior. The One by whom we are called Christians. Christ.
Let’s set an example for others. To not be so mean. Actually be nicer. A kinder, gentler breed of Christians. Let’s learn how to disagree with one another the right way. Full of grace and truth. Let’s love one another. And, demonstrate the peace of Christ to those who are seeking peace.
If they can’t find kindness, forgiveness, love in us—where will they find it?
“A kind man benefits himself, but a cruel man brings disaster on himself.” Proverbs 11:17