Tolerance will NEVER be enough.
Tolerance DOES NOT work – it doesn’t go NEAR far enough.
Listen, you have to know, Tolerance is absolutely killing us …
How would YOU respond to “being TOLERATED?” What if we didn’t just tolerate people that were different than us? What if we tried LOVING people regardless of their differences?
If you’ve ever encountered people that actually practice what the Bible teaches you’ll understand what I’m talking about when I say GRACE. Grace is GREATER than tolerance. Tolerance ignores what GRACE LOVES.
If you’ve encountered a church that doesn’t do more than tolerate you have encountered a FRAUD. Jesus didn’t just TOLERATE people that practiced life in ways differing from what He taught – The Bible says He LOVED them – He even went so far as to WILLINGLY lay down His life for them. That is NOT tolerance – that is LOVE … THAT my friend is GRACE.
GRACE ... If you’ve encountered a gathering of people that call themselves Christian – but they don’t extend GRACE – don’t just walk away … RUN …
No one wants to be to “tolerated” … it does not … it cannot … feel good to be Tolerated … Tolerance does not encourage, it doesn’t embrace, it certainly doesn’t appreciate, accept or LOVE.
Really – think about it … so you walk in a room – you feel the eyes of “tolerance” resting on you. You see the shoulders turn … you hear the conversations resume … but in a slightly more hushed tone. Walking across the room sitting or standing off by yourself, you know the people in the room don’t agree with you, they don’t value the things YOU value. They are just … well, they are doing what they have been trained to do … they are TOLERATING YOU … they're putting up with you.
Thankfully, they’re NOT holding up signs saying … “GOD HATES” you …
It’s not like their grabbing you by the neck and screaming at you to change. This of course is better than that, but, in the end, it may be just as divisive or exclusionary.
It certainly is not showing CARE or CONCERN; TOLERANCE does not understand. IT doesn’t CARE; IT is cold & it’s indifferent.
You are / we are / PEOPLE are, looking NOT to be tolerated, but to be appreciated to be respected, embraced or dare I say it … LOVED.
Tolerance is cheap inadequate replacement for something that lies at the heart of Christianity.
In stark defense of one of what is deemed as one of the most politically inappropriate institutions in the world today, may I submit that the church has an unappreciated often overlooked gift and it is called GRACE.
Grace goes miles beyond Tolerance. Grace embraces – it does more than accept. Grace looks you in the eye and lets you know that YOU have VALUE, GREAT VALUE.
Grace Values, it strengthens, it encourages and LOVES. IT LOVES, it really does … it goes beyond just putting up with, it wraps one up in a full, all-out embrace and says “I LOVE YOU.”
GRACE NEVER ignores. Tolerance Ignores; kinda makes Tolerance IGNORance. Grace, however, GRACE wades in right through the deepest of disagreement and says, even when we don’t agree, we can be there for you.
Grace never POLARIZES – TOLERANCE polarizes, but Grace, Grace says I don’t have to understand your choices in order to care. But that is the difference isn’t it? Tolerance tolerates; Grace LOVES.
Would you rather have someone extend Tolerance towards you, or GRACE? To be handled with Tolerance, or to be handled with Grace?
Now look, in conclusion, let me say I’m not so naïve, or blind to the sad truth that not all churches practice or even understand the heart of their doctrine. But there are a quite GRACEFUL many that DO.
Please, I’d beg you if I could, don’t ever settle for TOLERANCE. YOU deserve better than tolerance. Don’t stop looking, until you have found GRACE. Find a grace giver.
Grace loves THOSE that Tolerance ignores.