Thursday, September 26, 2013

Affiliating ourselves with the undesireable

Romans 12:16
Proverbs 17:3-5
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Why would we be unwilling to associate with other people unless we were judging them and assuming that we will also be judged as being like them if we affiliate ourselves with them. We classify people just as often as we classify objects. If we don't want to be seen as belonging to a particular category, we tend to avoid the individuals who do belong out of fear that they will change us or that we will be misjudged by others as belonging. Yet our Maker who tests our hearts is the only one truly capable of judging us. Perhaps He judges the individuals in that group we're afraid of associating with as being superior to ourselves. By distancing ourselves, we are missing a terrific opportunity to allow them to change us. Since He is the only one who sees into the depths of our hearts, we should trust His judgment about which group we should affiliate ourselves with rather than our own judgment. Nor should our fear of others' perceptions of us hold us back. After all, who is the more important judge, another human being or the Lord who sees all? When the Lord calls us to build close relationships with unpopular groups, whether poor, nerdy, young, old, disabled, unstable, or other, we should set aside our judgments and fears so we can affiliate ourselves as fully as possible with that group.

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