Last night at dinner, I took the juicy chicken from the oven and placed the steaming hot morsels onto my plate. I portioned my children’s plates then sat down to eat. Picking up the saltshaker, I shook it over the chicken, hoping to add some flavor. But to my surprise, nothing came out! I shook and shook. Still nothing. I ran it under hot water, hoping to unclog the holes but still nothing. To my chagrin, I gave up. I popped the chicken into my mouth. Although it tasted good, I couldn’t help but notice how much better it could have been if I had the benefit of some salt on it.
It’s the same with our words. As Christians, we have the best news of all—the Good News! But our words are seasoned with condemnation rather than grace. Just as I longed to savor the chicken with the extra flavor salt can add, the world longs for our acceptance rather than our chastisement.
We don’t have to fully accept sinful behavior to accept someone as a person. Even Christ didn’t do that. He didn’t blindly welcome everyone into God’s kingdom. In fact, he made it clear that His disciples are those who hold to His Father’s teachings. He still had to die so the ultimate penalty for our sin could be paid. But He took on our sin so we could have the opportunity to be free. That’s grace. Grace helps us love people just as they are. As we season our lives with grace, others will truly understand who Christ is and bring them closer to the opportunity to be set free.
Is your witness to others seasoned with grace or with condemnation?