“If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.” John 15:19 (NIV)
I sometimes struggle with acceptance. Especially as a Christian who stands up for my rights. The world can be pretty rough on you if they discover you don’t share their values. There’s little tolerance for followers of Jesus.
Long ago, on the island state of Tasmania lived a nightmarish predator that farmers couldn’t tolerate. Not to be confused with the Tasmanian devil, this outcast was called the Tasmanian tiger. But since the last captive one died in a zoo in 1936, they are thought to be extinct.
It was quite an anomaly. Resembling a large wolf with tiger stripes, these carnivorous marsupials would sometimes stand upright and hop around on two legs. Their jaws opening to an unearthly 120-degree angle they were sometimes called a glitch or freak of nature, a mess.
Frightening to encounter in the outback, these elusive monsters might still be around according to eyewitnesses who claim to have spotted them.
I too, feel like an anomaly. The world, with their distorted thinking, is offended by me. When those who do not follow Jesus learn of my unconventional behavior and beliefs, they look at me in horror. Like I’m a malformed beast attempting to devour them.
The world would rather I am extinct. Christianity only reminds them of their desperate need for a Savior and it infuriates them. The more different we are, the greater their discomfort. Our presence disrupts and creates animosity between us and the devil’s territory.
We may be strange to non-believers but we’re beautiful creatures of God, made in his image. And you know what? We’re not extinct. It’s been 2,000 years and we’re still here. They can’t get rid of us!
I must learn to stand upright, open my mouth wide and speak truth. Proclaiming his loving kindness and mercy to those who oppose us. We are beautiful messes glorifying our Savior.
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, fill me with boldness to live holy and uncompromising. Christ’s sacrifice made me a new creature on Earth. Help me share my faith in obedience and leave the results to you. Amen.