Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Giving Labels

Giving Labels


I am so thankful God does not nail labels on us as we tend to tack on each other in this world. Labels like that person is a thief, that person is a murderer, that person is a rapist, that person is an adulterer, that person is an alcoholic, that person is gay, that person is a Mormon, that person is a geek, that person is African American or that person is autistic. It is something I am very guilty of and try to abstain from, but none of us can say we do not label people. For each and every one of us is guilty of labeling one another and this world’s comprised of labels.

I like one of the Urban Dictionary’s meaning of a label, obviously from a teenager and not exactly the appropriate word choices or tone I would use but it is to the point, “pointless words (emo, goth, skater, preppy, poser, etc.) used to stereotype people because of what they wear or what music they listen to. Most people who label others have NO idea what they are talking about, in fact anyone who labels people are narrowminded ******** who have nothing better to do.”

As one can see, labels can be very demeaning and very hurtful. Labels tend to stereotype and target people. The media is extremely influential at pushing labels onto people. It is no wonder people from jail or prison have such a hard time adjusting back into society when they get out as the media and people are so eager to place labels on them, showing little compassion or forgiveness. The people in this world would rather throw stones at “those kind of people” even if they have accepted Jesus into their life as their savior. What makes it even harder for them is  they are being bombarded by the enemy from all sides who is hoping they will fall back into their previous lifestyle and give up all hope. The world hates them for their sins. How many Christians would truly sit next to someone at church if they knew that person had murdered someone, yet just days ago accepted Jesus into their life? I know Jesus would sit next to them. Would you? Or would you let the label convince you to turn your back to them condemn them and judge them. I have yet to find a church that is truly totally accepting, compassionate and loving like Jesus. We are too hung up on the things that hurt us, offend us, scare us, anger us and on labels.

An image comes to mind of a young woman who was brought to Jesus by the Pharisees and was charged with committing adultery and the law clearly stated that she should be stoned to death. They ask him what should be done to the woman? His reply was he who is without sin let him cast the first stone. Jesus did not condemn her but forgave her and told her to go and sin no more. The Pharisees labeled her as an adulteress and were blind to what Jesus was trying to teach them – that we are all equal of sin. We are all sinners but yet God gave us a chance to be redeemed through his son Jesus Christ. He died on the cross for ALL of us, not just some of us. We each have the free will to accept him in our life or not. So do not be ashamed of your past sins, or feel you are not worthy, ignore people who label you and take heart for Jesus is your rock and will help you weather ALL storms.

Jesus commanded us to love one another, not persecute, judge or label one another but to LOVE. As He states in John 13:34, “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.”

I hope you all have a blessed week!