“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13
If you are sharing memes which are critical of your brothers and sisters in Christ…you might be seeking the approval of men.
If you are willing to believe that your fellow members in the Body of Christ are hateful, bigoted, or ignorant on some popular issue…you might be seeking the approval of men.
If you assume what evils are the motivations behind the convictions of your fellow church members, without seeing much evidence… you might be seeking the approval of men.
If you are listening to voices in the unbelieving world for advice on how to judge other believers… you might be seeking the approval of men.
If your desire for the approval of other human beings is so desperate that you are willing to condemn (yes, condemn) your fellow sharers in the forgiveness of Christ…you need to stop caring for the approval of people.
And start caring more for the approval of God.
Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10
We are not trying to please people but God, who tests our hearts…I Thessalonians 2:4b
Our fellowship, our real connection, is Jesus Christ. It is a stronger and more significant connection than any other that you will ever have. He is the one who holds us together and He will never fail.
You have just demonstrated that if that relationship in Christ were to depend on you, it would now be dissolved.
But He has brought us together by His pain, blood, and self-sacrifice. We should never dismiss or trample the priceless work He has done for the purpose of creating a fellowship in which He takes great joy.
You are going to need those fellow believers in the days to come. Do you think that your agreement with the unbelieving world will gain their approval? You too will be rejected if you belong to Christ. It may be eventual or it may be soon, but it is inevitable.
News Flash: People outside of the church by choice are going to put you in the same category as those other believers you are trying to distance yourselves from, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. You have already chosen the counter-cultural, unpopular road in deciding to be identified with Jesus Christ. There is no hope of being among the accepted anymore. He was as cool, as kind, as loving, as perfect as anyone could possibly ever be…and they killed Him for it. Resign yourself to clashing with the world where it really hurts.
Remember who you are. Remember your family. Remember Who He is. Remember who bought you, at what cost, and why.
Seek what makes Him joyful. He is joyful when we love one another. When we:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.