I blogged about my son having an annoying kid in his class a while ago. Even at the tender age of eight, we humans criticize and choose who to love and hate. Recently, God has taken his hand and tugged hard at the weed of criticism in my fleshy core. It hit me when I read some Scripture that I've read a hundred times, but in my current Bible study certain characters were pulled from the passage (Matt. 1:7-16). And these characters were in God's plan, they did God's will. Our society might have names for them--like hooker, tramp, cheater, adulterer, alien, but the Bible calls them as they are seen by God: Descendants of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Rahab, Ruth, David, Jezebel. Old Testament brokenness that pushed through the muck and the mire, and in the end, found redemption in the God of Israel. Even earning places in the blood line of God's Perfect Son.
So when I, a professing Christian, choose to not love or care for someone based on their current choice or sin, then I am caving to a narrow-minded religion, and not acknowledging an omniscient Being who knows the road ahead.
Beth Moore says it best:
"When He who was, who is, and who is to come sees each one of us, He sees who we were, who we are, and who we will become."
My critical spirit is quick to rise up in me and turn up my nose or judge others for their choices or mistakes. Do I dare play God in a very unlikely, godless way? Because, truly, our God is one of mercy and foresight. He knows how each of our stories are going to turn out. Even the hooker, even the drug addict, even the stay-at-home mom with nineteen kids and counting. God knows the outcome.
Grace is for the present. Not for the only-if.
It all makes sense now. To love your enemies. Because even they might be in God's eternal plan. Even they might be someone I call brother or sister one day. I don't know how easy it might be to one day love those hard-to-love people, so I'll start now, and give room for God to be God.