Over the weekend, I attended a Christian music festival and had a wonderful time. I haven’t been to concert in a year (was too busy with school and work), so it was quite the treat to praise God amongst thousands of other Christians. My soul soared as I danced and sang praises to my God and King.
So, you can imagine my surprise to learn that many of the same people who were dancing around and worshiping God in their seats were not carrying that joy out to the people who were hired to serve them during this event. My friend and I waited in line to order soft pretzels and water, and the line wasn’t very long. When we got to the window to order our food, my friend made a simple mistake, and the cashier was very gracious. We both thanked her for her grace, and my friend said some kind words to the cashier.
And then the cashier did something that astonished me: she actually thanked my friend and me for being nice to her. I replied, “Please tell me that at this Christian event, you are not encountering people who are NOT being nice to you.” Her response was that my friend’s and my “niceness” was not the norm at this event. WWHHAATT?? I apologized to her on behalf of the Church and told her that a Christian event should be the most enjoyable event to serve, and if that is not the case, then the Church is not behaving in a Christlike manner.
Church, please hear me: You are an ambassador of Christ, so everything you say and do as you go about your life sends a message to the people around you about who Jesus is. When you are kind, the World sees Jesus’ kindness. However, when you behave in the same way the World does (or worse!), you are representing Jesus as being that kind of person as well. This is why Jesus said that whatever you have done to the least of these, you have done to him. You will be held accountable for the way you treat other people because how you behave reflects who God is. You don’t want to learn that your selfish behavior turned others away from the One True God.
To be continued…
[Graphic: Cartoon of Grace shrugging her shoulders under the words, “My Bad.” Courtesy Bitmoji.]