“Acknowledging the value of a soul plants in us a seed of willingness to build others up, encourage others, and call the greatness out of them. […] My point is, we should interact with everyone based not only on who they are, but also with expectation of who they could be.”
– Real Love in an Angry World: How to Stick with Your Convictions Without Alienating People by Rick Bezet, p110
Knowing how to approach the people around us as Christians can feel a little controversial at times. Should we point out sin or simply focus on love and Jesus?
This book attempts to bridge the divide with an invitation to rethink our mannerisms surrounding our convictions for more Christ-likeness. It is a gentle admonishment and a little tough love for us – as Christians – to rethink the way we reach out to the people around us.
Bezet presents ways to be more welcoming and loving, but also firm in our beliefs as Christians. I didn’t necessarily agree with it in every single point and it doesn’t solve the problem, but it is thought-provoking in a helpful way.
We won’t ever be able to share or live out our faith perfectly – God’s love is perfect, we aren’t – but we can start somewhere and thinking critically about our own process could be good place to begin.
Quotes and crucial points:
- “Sloppy agape means we try to love someone by justifying their sin.” p42
- “The world doesn’t dislike Christians because Christians are godly, honest and stand for justice. The world dislikes us because we can be judgmental and without any wisdom or skill concerning relationships.” p 43
- “Unbelievers are not the enemy. The enemy is the devil, who keeps the world blind and scared and broken. Unbelievers are the people Jesus is asking us to reach out to with real, tough, sacrificial, selfless love.” p85
- “When we choose to believe the best about others and speak he best about others – even if we think they don’t deserve it – we’re choosing to live like Jesus lived. We’re choosing to see the potential in them rather than the mistakes they’ve made.” p 138
- “The way you relate to your world can cause the people around you to encounter real love in an angry world. Don’t be afraid. Take the next step. Do it today.” p 182
Have you read this book? Might you read it? It’s not for everyone, but I’d love to hear your thoughts!
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(Disclaimers: I received a review copy of this book from Baker Publishing Group. All opinions are my own. Post contains Amazon affiliate links.)