Romans 15:7 (NLT)
7 Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory.
The apostle best explains this in the opening verses of Romans 7:1-6, �We who are strong must be considerate of those who are sensitive about things like this. We must not just please ourselves. We should help others do what is right and build them up in the Lord. For even Christ didn�t live to please himself. As the Scriptures say, �The insults of those who insult you, O God, have fallen on me.� Such things were written in the Scriptures long ago to teach us. And the Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God�s promises to be fulfilled. May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.�
Gordon MacDonald shares the following story about visiting a small group of men and women affiliated with Alcoholics Anonymous. MacDonald said that he visited the group because he has friends who are recovering alcoholics and he wanted to see for himself what they were talking about. Here's what he found:
One morning Kathy�I guessed her age at 35�joined us for the first time. One look at her face caused me to conclude that she must have been Hollywood-beautiful at 21. Now her face was swollen, her eyes red, her teeth rotting. Her hair looked unwashed, uncombed for who knows how long.
"I've been in five states in the past month," she said. "I've slept under bridges on several nights. Been arrested. Raped. Robbed (now weeping). I don't know what to do. I � don't � want � to � be � homeless � any more. But (sob) I can't stop drinking (sob). I can't stop (sob). I can't � "
Next to Kathy was a rather large woman, Marilyn, sober for more than a dozen years. She reached with both arms toward Kathy and pulled her close, so close that Kathy's face was pressed to Marilyn's ample breast. I was close enough to hear Marilyn speak quietly into Kathy's ear, "Honey, you're going to be OK. You're with us now. We can deal with this together. All you have to do is keep coming. Hear me? Keep on coming." And then Marilyn kissed the top of Kathy's head.
I was awestruck. The simple words, the affection, the tenderness. How Jesus-like. I couldn't avoid a troubling question that morning. Could this have happened in the places where I have worshiped? Would there have been a space in the program for Kathy to tell her story? Would there have been a Marilyn to respond in this way? [Gordon MacDonald, "My Small Group, Anonymous," Leadership Journal (Winter 2014)]
Marilyn was living out God�s word by accepting Kathy who was homeless, who had been arrested, raped, robbed and probably others things she hadn�t shared. We all want to be accepted in life, but we must also be willing to give acceptance to others. Learn to accept people for who they are. We don�t have to go along with bad behaviors or sinful actions, but we can still accept the person and love them for who they are.
Last edited by AskMe; 09/22/14 06:54 AM.