Build a longer table, not a taller wall.

hey fam! <3

I’m sure if you have a Facebook, or Twitter you have heard people share something to the effect of, “If you have a great fortune, build a longer table, not a taller wall”.

buildalongertable

 

i know how hard it can be to be so afraid that you just want to put up barriers and protect yourself. even if that means building an unrealistic wall on the border…. i get it. you want to make your future known, you want to know that your family and you will be safe from terrorist attacks. you want to know who is coming into this country. you don’t want to pay high taxes. i get it. really. i do.

 

but when we allow fear to take hold of us, we allow it to dictate our thoughts, actions and beliefs. we give fear power to come into our lives like an oppressive dictator kicking down doors.

when we make way to fear, we stop being inviting. we stop loving. we stop being real.

i don’t claim to know everything, because i don’t. but what i do know is that no matter how hard we try, we can never prevent attacks of violence. violence comes from fear which then turns into anger which then turns to hate when then turns to violence. no matter how hard we try, there will always be something we need to protect ourselves from.

honestly……..we might be better living in a bubble! am i, right?
that’s a unrealistic reality though…….living in a bubble or hiding ourselves away from humanity.

What if we became more inviting? What if we made our table longer?
That refugee family that just moved in down the street? What if we invite them over for Easter, or Fourth of July, or Christmas?
That mailman/mail lady who just lost his/her spouse, what if we talk to them or make them a batch of cookies?
That friend or relative that you don’t agree with politically, what if we stopped arguing with them, and started listening?
That relative or friend who just came out as gay, bi, queer, or transgender? How about we be loving and supportive? How about we invite them over and hang out with them?
That African-American friend of ours who says, “Black Lives Matters” and talk about how they feel oppressed? Let’s not disregard their hurt, or their feelings.

Let’s listen. friends, let’s not allow our fears or disagreements keep us from extending our tables.
longer tables, not taller walls.

We are all //that// woman at the well

I’m sure we are all familiar with John 4:1-26 the story about the woman at the well.

Jesus had been traveling and of course when you travel for extended periods of time, you get thirsty. so he stops at a well and asks this woman there to get him a drink. now this woman goes, “uhm, excuse me. we aren’t supposed to associate”. I can just imagine her looking stunned and perplexed that Jesus is speaking to her. you see, she was a samaritan, and men were not usually supposed to address women unless they were accompanied by a husband.

You see, this woman, she was more focused on living by the law. she was more focused on living by the book. i am sure we all know someone like that. perhaps even you are like that. jesus however, he was focused on love and grace.

We are all the woman at the well that Jesus wasn’t supposed to be talking to. we all sin. and sin separate us from god. 

whether its drinking underage, or sex before marriage, adultery, or even cursing or holding on to anger. we all deal with sin. we all have it

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it’s easy for us to point fingers at others and judge those whose sin may be more public and known. it’s easy yes, but it causes isolation. it prevents us from taking the gospel to people who may need it.

As Jesus stated in John 8:7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”

friends, lets put down those stones and realize that we are all the woman at the well. we are all that woman that doesn’t deserve the grace given to us by God. we are all the woman at the well who society would say we shouldn’t be talking to Jesus. we are all that woman.

You are so much more than that “label”

Admit it.

We’ve all been labeled or labeled someone at some point…… Whether it’s by our physical appearance, or religious affiliation, or our skin color. Here are some examples of labels:

  1. too skinny, too fat,
  2. too emotional, depressed, talks too fast, quiet, shy
  3. geek, nerd, smart, stupid, idiot, retard, jock, hipster
  4. woman, man
  5. straight, gay,
  6. liberal, conservative, democrat, republican
  7. christian, muslim, catholic
  8. black, white, purple, green, etc

In some way or another society has given us labels. Friends, can we stop?

When we label others, we are giving them a title. we are isolating them and excluding them. when we label others, we are not seeing them as they were made in christ.

 

 

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Genesis 1:27 says, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”

God has created each one of us. He has given us immense value in that we are created in HIS image. When we use those labels as insults, or in a way that prevents us from seeing other people as being created in the image of God it becomes a problem.

Instead of seeing each other through the lenses of labels given to us by society, how about we start appreciating and praising the wonder things about one another? Let us not allow the labels to prevent us from loving on others. Let us not be so blinded by these labels that we forget to view each other as being created by the same God we were.

Let’s all spread a little more joy, peace and love and stop with the labels.

 

K?

<3 Elizabeth Louise