Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.
My friend and I were walking home from work, having one of our philosophical discussions. I’m coming from the position of a Christian, and he is coming from an agnostic viewpoint. He doesn’t deny the truth of the bible, or that Christ is who he says he is, but for him there are still too many unanswered questions. This particular morning his question was geared toward why Christ chose the 12 disciples in his circle of friends. Instead of church leaders, and people of great influence, he chose fishermen and men of “questionable character.”
Christ accepted the disciples for who they were, not for the prestige they could bring him and his message. He knew that Peter would deny his involvement with Christ, and he knew Judas would betray him out of greed, and yet he still accepted them. It’s easy to accept a person just like yourself, but what about someone totally opposite?
True relationships come from accepting a person for who they are, regardless of their strengths and weaknesses. Of course, if we only accept those like ourselves, we would never grow, or learn to see things in a different way. The narrow-minded view of non-acceptance often results in cliques, racism, segregation, and has even led to hate crimes. I know those seem a little drastic, but they are all consequences of a lack of acceptance.
Christ accepted people for who they were. He knew that people were more than just a job title, or fancy clothes. He could see past the external shell to the heart, where the true character of a person is. If Christ accepted his followers for who they were, then we should follow his example, and accept others for who they are, without prejudice, or judgement.
Challenge: Don’t try to mold someone else to what you feel they should be. Learn from the example of Christ, and accept them for what they are.