Dividing lines will always exist. But they don’t have to define us. If we are afraid of the titles we hold over one another, then we must learn to give each other grace within those beliefs.
When did loving our neighbor as ourselves become a matter of convenience or preference?
This tells me you haven’t engaged with my story. This tells me you aren’t really interested in hearing what Jesus is doing my life and are more interested in pointing out the sin in my life and trying to save me from myself.
Have the courage to love yourself without the safety blanket of self-righteousness. Have the courage to love someone else without assuming you already know who they are.
To love neighbors as ourselves demands movement into places of discomfort. Vulnerability. Risk. Because that is what we long for from others.
And maybe that is how you fight hellfire. Not with more hellfire, but with embodied solidarity. With protests. With makeshift signage. With fierce compassion and bravery in the face of the depths of human ignorance and depravity.
Stop trying to use shame and blame to change people. It’s not working and it will never work. Been there, done that. I’m done. I want for us to do everything from a place of love, but this takes work. I know it begins with me, and it begins with you.
The arc of fear is a powerful motivator. But the arc of fear never finishes bending where it seems to lead, because under the immense pressure of such a significant force, it will always at some point break.