My daughter was in high school. A concerned person pulled me aside after church.
Do you know what your daughter is doing?
I waited to hear, holding my breath just in case there was something that I had missed with my child. It can happen. It does happen, right? I didn’t want to be naive.
She’s hanging out with people who aren’t Christians.
Oh, that. I sighed in relief.
Yes, I knew about that. Because they hung out at our house too.
She invited them to come over often. They spent the night. I knew their names and some of the details of their lives because she shared them with me and her dad.
When I shared this with that person (who truly had my daughter’s best interest at heart), they were a little affronted.
Do you understand they aren’t Christians?
Once again, yes.
My daughter grew into a beautiful, strong and tenacious woman, a professor who teaches others how to make a difference. She’s a mom of two ornery boys and married to a guy we love like a son.
She came to my house a couple of days ago. When I opened the door, she stood on the porch with three pre-teens. These are a group of girls who don’t always have it easy and she loves them like crazy. She’s mentored this group of girls for a few years on Sunday afternoons.
“I told them you’d have good snacks,” she said and the pre-teens marched in the house. They ate some snacks, sat around the table and shared what was going on in their lives, and then took a long walk on the trail behind my house.
As I watched my daughter interact with these beautiful young girls, I was grateful that she didn’t live in a bubble way back then, and still refuses to do so today.
What is a bubble and is it really a problem?
A “bubble” takes place when our community exclusively sounds like, looks like, acts like, and believes just like us.
It can happen when we have strong opinions about a group of people or a culture or a brand of politics, but never take the time to know what the other person believes, or why they believe the way they do.
Huge bubbles are created when we put up boundaries around things that aren’t sin, just in case they might lead to sin, and we become hyper-vigilant to make sure that everyone stays within that self-designed bubble.
I understand that we want to be wise. I really do.
I understand that it’s good to surround yourself with people who you truly love, and who share your love for Christ.
I get it that sin is devastating.
But if Jesus is our example — and he is — then I’m not sure that bubbles are where we should live.
Jesus burst bubbles right and left.
Instead of living in a bubble, Jesus let his light shine. May we do the same. #ComeWithMe http://ctt.ec/9a01N+ @suzanneeller
Jesus loved people who were different from the traditional crowd. He believed in people who others had discarded. He showed us that if we listen to people and see them, that sometimes it led them straight into the arms of the Father.
Jesus crossed the street often. He went to the well. He invited himself to dinner.
He engaged in long conversations over debates.
He walked straight into crowds where people adored him, mocked him, and were curious about him. His compassion was the lasting impression in those encounters and that became the shining light.
He didn’t sin in an effort to love the sinner. Instead, he remained true to himself and his mission, which was to mend broken hearts, release chains of bondage, and share incredibly good news.
He spoke truth, and his most direct words (might we even say hard truth) was reserved for those who lived in a bubble and demanded that others live there too.
Jesus came to rescue humanity and we are part of that plan. https://ctt.ec/b4zma+ @suzanneeller
He never failed to see the person in front of him. Ever.
Living in a bubble is dangerous.
Why dangerous, Suzie?
Because we just might forget that Jesus came to rescue humanity and we are part of that plan. We might start to consider our faith as a club and monitor who gets to come in, and who remains on the outer edge.
Let’s burst our bubbles.
Listen, even if we don’t agree.
Open our circle to include people that are different from us.
Have honest conversations filled with truth and light.
It’s just too easy to live in a bubble, when easy was never the word Jesus used for faith.
Instead he promised adventure, transformation, challenges, growth, miracles, and climbing out of our comfort zone to love people in his name.
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