The Bridge – John 8:11
My son Jaime had just turned 20, and for his birthday we took a trip to New York. We saw all the sites – had all the fun. We went and saw a concert, a very popular band with a huge crowd, and we had great seats. There was so much energy in the room and so much being said. I was surprised by how much positivity was in all the music. As the lead singer kept going, he began sharing a bit of his story. He said to the crowd in love, and I could see it on his face, “You feel that you’re broken, but you’re not,” he said, “You are not broken. You’re perfect just as you are.” The crowd roared – there was such a warm feeling in the room and all I could think was how beautiful that moment was, but it just wasn’t true.
If we love people, we’ll step back and let people do what they do, let things happen, and just love them where they are.
I thought, there are people here in this room who just felt “I’m going to be okay just like I am.” And you know what? We’re all broken. We’re all a mess, but for some reason in our generation we feel that we either have to tell people the truth or we have to love them; and in order to tell them the truth we’ll have to get in their face and say what they don’t want to hear. But if we love people, we’ll step back and let people do what they do, let things happen, and just love them where they are. Jesus didn’t ever do that.
Love earns the right to speak the truth, but truth proves that you really love.
Jesus never spoke the truth without love, and He never loved without truth. He never told a broken person that they were whole, because that’s not love. Everything Jesus ever said or did was totally against the modern culture He was surrounded by, but everything Jesus ever said or did was for people. It can be done.
In church if we tell someone, “look you’re running off a cliff right now, you need to stop,” that’s viewed as judgement and that’s just not in the Bible. Jesus spoke to people where they lived and He spoke to them in a way that they were ready to hear the truth. Even if it meant big costs to them. He saved a woman from being stoned, and then he said go and sin no more. I don’t condemn you, but you can’t keep walking in this. Love earns the right to speak the truth, but truth proves that you really love.
In the song “The Bridge,” I’m trying to communicate that we need to make bridge-building relationships with the world. The world has become very educated as to what the church is against, but they’re not real sure what the church is for. I think most people who have a problem with God, don’t really have a problem with God. It’s what someone at church said about God. It’s what someone at church told them what “God thought of them.” At times maybe it’s ‘sin-envy.’ Maybe it’s the fact that we can’t scratch all of those itches anymore.
I want to meet people like Jesus met me and we do that by living a life that meets people where they are, loves them where they are, but speaks truth when it’s time to speak truth.
We’re trying to follow Jesus and they’re out there getting to live their lives and do what they want and it makes us mad at the world. Is it ‘sin-envy’ that makes me want to throw swords of words and tweets at a world that’s bleeding out already? Or can I let God break my heart for people and see that people never were the enemy? The enemy fools people into the things they do. So as I draw closer to Jesus, I want to see people the way Jesus does. I want to meet people like Jesus met me and we do that by living a life that meets people where they are, loves them where they are, but speaks truth when it’s time to speak truth.
Who are the people in your life you can be the bridge for?