2:66 – What Label Do You Have?
#faithbites #faithjourney label
For Lent this year, I’m giving up trying to convince people that they may be mistaken or try to show them the other side of their arguments. I was spending a lot of time, energy, and spirit on it which was wearing me down. I want to spend that time instead by trying to share a blessing everyday.
On my Facebook today, there was much discussion about what my voice means to people and what is good or not for me. Lots of labels were thrown around: liberal, conservative, libertarian. But what do they mean?
When I look at the labels that could be applied to me I came up with: Christian, Father, Brother, Husband, Son, Uncle, Funny, Stubborn, Liberal, Open-minded, ethnically Jewish, of Russian and Romanian Descent, Smart, Loving, Naive, empathetic, Educator, and more.
But what does each of these mean? Don’t hey mean something different to different people?
- But now, this is what the LORD says— he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine – Isaiah 43:1
- “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” – Romans 8:1
I have been called many things in life, as an old professor said, some are more preferred than others. When we label though, we may use the world differently than how someone hears it.
For instance, liberal to me, means open on social issues and believing the government should not create laws that stop people from being free to express themselves. Liberal to many others mean radicals who want the government to give away everything for free. Then there’s economic liberals, moral liberals, and on and on. The point being, is we try to encapsulate someone in a label.
What our scripture shows us, is we are beyond labels. We are new creatures in Christ, chosen by name, with no condemnation. That is pretty special. Our labels only serve to divide us.
Often when I look at the Church and ask WWJD, I think he would be shocked by the divisions in the church. We label ourselves not by faith in Christ but by our religion or denomination. Again, we separate. Let’s look past the labels and listen to each other
What label do you use for yourself? If you made a list, what order would the be in? How do you label others? When you debate, do you think of someone as a label and that colors your judgement, or do you look at their idea or opinion. Try it out and see how you can change the conversation.
Gracious God, than you for choosing us to be your children. Than you for giving us free will and ideas and opinions. Help us to move beyond the labels they divide us and look toward the ideas of the people you bring into our lives. The. We can multiply your blessings. In your name, Amen.