Don’t label people—love them
“We have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view.” 2Co 5:16 NLT
If you tend to associate only with “your own kind,” think about this: “We have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view.” Jesus went miles out of His way to meet a Samaritan woman at a well. From a cultural and religious point of view, it was a bad move. First, she’d been divorced five times so she had a tarnished reputation. Second, she was a Gentile. And in those days a Jew couldn’t drink water drawn by Gentiles or eat their food. Jewish physicians couldn’t attend to non-Jewish patients. Jews actually referred to Gentiles as “unclean,” believing that by mixing with them they too would become unclean. But Jesus was all about including people, not excluding them: “The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood” (Jn 1:14 TM). Jesus touched lepers, loved foreigners, and spent so much time with partygoers that religious leaders called him a “lush, a friend of the riffraff” (Mt 11:19 TM). Jesus didn’t label people; He loved them. And when you follow Him, He puts His finger on your prejudices and makes you deal with them. That’s because He wants to change the way you look at people, not seeing them as Jews or Gentiles, insiders or outsiders, liberals or conservatives, etc. “We have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view.” Today you may come across some discarded people like the woman at the well. They may have been thrown out of church or just turned off by church, and you’ll have a chance to label them or love them. Honor God—and love them!