There is nothing that gets me worked up like crowd mentality.
Some guy starts booing his own team in the stands, and all of the sudden an entire stadium thinks it’s a good idea. Jennifer Aniston picked up some highlights and a blow dryer and now eight million women have to look at pictures of themselves from the 90s with hairstyles gone wrong.
Or we could not.
We could make our own decisions and ask ourselves, “Do I really think this is a good idea? Do I really believe in this?”
This is what God’s Love does: it concerns itself with beliefs rather than momentary ideas.
Without awareness of what we believe, we end up cheering for the things we actually hate, and booing for the things we love.
It takes courage to call something wrong.
It takes lots of courage to call something out, to open our mouths, to think through an experience rather than let the experience grab ahold of us and take us for a ride. That’s why the most powerful person in the bullying triangle is the silent bystander.
Elie Wiesel, Nobel Peace Prize winner, author, and Holocaust survivor, is quoted as saying –
“The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of beauty is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, but indifference between life and death.”
Love is not indifferent. Love calls wrong what is wrong. Love recognizes the difference between what matters for a moment and what matters for eternity and where the two collide.
Jesus experienced crowd mentality and He ended up on the brunt end of silence and indifference. When standing innocent before a crowd, before a governor who held His fate in his hands, Jesus had to watch as the world rejoiced in wrongdoing.
God however is not indifferent. God loves brave.
That very day, Jesus took all our indifference and all our wrongdoing on Himself. He took every curse and every chant that gloried in His own death and He held it in His person, nailed to a cross, so that Love would rule and indifference would end.
Jesus loved braver than we can imagine, so we can love brave in this moment, right now.
We can know what we believe because we have a name and a face to love. We let God inform our beliefs because we will always follow the crowd otherwise, from sports teams to bad hair to things that actually matter, like human trafficking and #metoo and ending the stigma surrounding mental health.
We rejoice in truth. We rejoice in belief. We rejoice in speaking up and speaking out in whatever big, bold ways and whatever tiny, never-insignificant-to-God ways, every day, by loving when it’s unpopular or uncomfortable.
We will no longer be bystanders, because Jesus did not stand by.
Who and how can you love brave today?
There’s a beautiful simplicity in the bald man (I may be biased). But I mean, look at Sir Patrick Stewart, who even in his old age is rocking the razor. While bald may be beautiful, we’re going to find out next week (read the post here), not everyone thinks so. Take a stand. Take a risk. Not just on haircuts, but through shared experience. Love does not standby, it engages! God has never stopped focusing on us, even in the worst sinful places we find ourselves. He wills us into existence. If God were to stop thinking about us for a moment, we would cease to be. He not only thinks of us, but enters in and takes everything we struggle with upon Himself. Heidi shares God’s brave love, found in the death and resurrection of Jesus, so that we can stand in forgiveness and grace. He stepped in and invites us to do the same.