Messy People

There’s a part of me that refuses to give up on people, even total screw-ups. Largely because I was once a total screw-up. Many wrote me off when I strayed, but there were those precious few who believed all was not lost. Had it not been for one particular brother, I might still be head deep in waste today.

When someone pulls you from the pit, it teaches you something about grace. I’ve learned that messy people don’t respond well to a pointing finger. They need a helping hand. If you rub a fallen brother’s nose in his own muck, he only sinks deeper. At least that’s my experience. I owe no thanks to the sin sniffer. The pit became a convenient escape from him – even it was killing me. I am in debt to the one who rolled up his sleeves and reached out to me. With his help I became a living testimony to the power of grace.

I’m not proud of my sinful past, but if I can be grateful for one thing, it has shown me that there is always hope, even for the messiest of people. This needs to be realized in a church community. We must always believe the best about others, even when they fall. Turning up our noses is not the answer. We must never lose hope in another. Never! Does not our faith declare that souls are salvageable? Is not the Bible a message of redemption? Does not the heart of God cry out to the fallen? We all know the answer: yes, yes and yes!

Judging those who fall is a most cowardly act. Feelings of superiority fills the mind like a dark cloud, while insecurity thunders the threat of its presence. The real heroes are those who roll up their sleeves and plunge their hands deep into the nappy scum, even if it’s to rescue a single fool from his own folly. Admittedly, this kind of courage does not come without disappointments. There are no guarantees the fallen one will want out of the pit. He may even sink further, smiling like a dope the entire way down. That’s why it’s easier to be a judge than a hero. Judges don’t suffer broken hearts. If a sinner sinks, they might even be happy with the outcome. A hero weeps. For this reason it takes guts to be one.

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