purple fish guts

Wednesday, August 10, 2005


I have been thinking a lot lately about being judgmental. My friend Mel has been condemned for empathizing with Lance Armstrong's children. (She grew up in a divorced home, too.) She has also been criticized and taken off blogrolls for *gasp* having a lesbian on her blogroll. I have been contemplating my prejudice against immaculate housekeepers. This morning I was talking to one of my new students about society's condemnation of smokers and drug addicts. (He and his wife smoke, and she is a case worker helping drug addicts.) My thoughts so far are that it is easy to judge when you don't have a face to put with the situation. God has blessed me with lots of different people touching my life to protect me from (and sometimes smash) prejudices. I want to take time to thank God for:

My sister who is an excellent housekeeper,
Her boyfriend who is black, in prison and is on the sex offender registry,
Another friend whose husband is also in prison,
My niece who is black,
My high school friend who had had several abortions and struggled with heroin addiction,
Another friend from high school who is a radical liberal and strict vegetarian,
My many co-workers (and sister!) who are Democrats,
My husband's cousin's husband, who was gay,
My cousin who is gay,
The two girls in high school who shared the good news about Jesus with me -- both of whom were overweight, one very much so,
Two Christian friends who divorced their husbands,
Many hispanics in New Mexico who I got to know and grew to love,
A college roommate who had gone to my high school and had been in the "in" crowd,
Another college roommate who is bipolar,
My assorted redneck relatives,
And I wouldn't be surprised if God sent a Muslim man my way to smash that one, too.

My point is not that I'm cool for knowing such a diverse group of people. I'm sure I'm on somebody's list, too. (Yeah, man, I have a friend who actually voted for Bush! She's one of those people who read the Bible and take it literally. Oh, yeah, and she even listens to country music! I know man, but besides that, she's not all bad!) I just think that if Jesus were walking on Earth, He would hang out at the gay bars, crack houses and on the streets with the homeless. I would be invited to join Him, but would be put in my place if I hinted that I thought I was any better than anyone else. That's how He lived when He was here, I'm sure it would be the same today.

My favorite book lately is Philip Yancey's What Is So Amazing About Grace? He talks a lot about how God loves us despite our sins, but also about how we need to love others despite their sins. After all, we all are sinners. It's easy to maximize other's sins and minimize our own, but Jesus loves us all the same. Immensely. Enough to suffer torture and death for us. All of us.