Brennan Manning said, “The outstretched arms of Jesus exclude no one, not the drunk in the doorway, the panhandler on the street, gays and lesbians in their isolation, the most selfish and ungrateful in their cocoons, the most unjust of employers and the most overweening of snobs. The love of Christ embraces all without exception.”
This statement to me is striking, especially in the sense of BECOMING more like Jesus.
If I am truly to become like Jesus, I must embrace all.
Not simply tolerate, generally accept, or maintain a political correctness in my speech.
But rather embrace.
Embrace is a strange word. It means, “to hug.”
So now my litmus test becomes whether or not I am able to hug someone. Or maybe how I respond to thinking of hugging someone sheds greater light on how my lifestyle needs to change.
Do I cringe at the thought of a hug? But what if the person has AIDS? What if they are a homosexual? What if they smell? What if I am afraid?
I guess the bigger question is do I want to become like Jesus?
Do I want to learn to embrace others in the same way that I have been embraced by Christ?