On Rachel Hollis.

I love Jesus, and if I’m being honest, cuss words do come out of my mouth occasionally. 

I love Jesus, and I love red wine.

I love Jesus, and some of my friends that I talk to on a daily basis are gay.  

I love Jesus, and I adore country music, 90’s music, and WOW worship CDs from the 2000’s.  

I love Jesus, and I read books like Girl, Wash Your Face. 

If you’re looking for someone who’s perfect, you’ve come to the wrong gal. If you’re looking for tribe of perfect people who never mess up, who always say the right things and have the right theology and never contradict Scripture, you won’t find that group around me. 

Life is messy. Diversity is good.

Judgment has destroyed me in the past and I refuse to entertain it any longer.

This world needs more encouragement. From anyone. Anywhere. At any time.

My life is better because I have learned to surround myself with people who are encouraging, uplifting, kind, sensitive, empathetic, truth tellers. I give my time to people who share ideas, brainstorm, and dream…rather than talk about other people.

My desire is that of Jesus - to be a person whose life and voice and spirit say “COME AS YOU ARE.” I save the conversations around doctrine and theology for relationships that have matured over years and ONLY for people who are walking hand in hand with Jesus. 

And really, I’m over those conversations. 

I think Jesus is too. 

I am a Christian and I love and accept you if you're a Christian or Muslim or Jewish or Buddhist or Jedi or love the opposite sex or love the same sex or love Madonna circa 1990. Not only that, but I think the ability to not be afraid of people who are different from me makes me a stronger, better version of myself because that’s what Jesus did.

There are so many humans on this planet, all created by God, all in His image. There is beauty in that dichotomy. 

The kingdom of God is within us, Christians, even the most imperfect Jesus lovers of all. We have a responsibility, first and foremost, to love.

*****

If you’re concerned about Rachel Hollis’ book Girl, Wash Your Face…I encourage you to read it. Especially if you’re a believer in Jesus. And especially if you feel the need to share anything about it. Anything, including this blog post that totally takes her words out of context and is quite unnecessary.

I have never read about self-helpers, people who are genuinely doing the best they can to make our society better, breaking the heart of Jesus in the New Testament. But I have read about religious people really pissing Him off with their rules and demands for everyone to get things right. 

Interestingly enough, Hollis points out some lies that a LOT of churchgoing Christians believe that are robbing us of the life Jesus died to give us.

I get it. We want to be careful. We want everyone who claims to follow Jesus to be RIGHT. That’s how we were raised. We want people to know what we do and don’t approve of. So we share words of caution and concern and feel the need to WARN people about stuff that scares us.

But from reading Scripture, I just don’t get the idea that was Jesus’ big concern. We can be just as distracted by religious rules as the self-helpers are by finding motivational tools to help them get through the day. 

We’re all just doing the best we can. 

Let’s err on the side of love. 

Why? Because when one of our friends who reads a self help book like Rachel Hollis’s decides that she’s not living her best life now and wants MORE…she is going to turn to the friend who loved her enough to let her read books like that without freaking out.

She is going to reach out to find out what to do when she can’t follow her dreams anymore because she realizes she’s just not that powerful on her own.

She’s going to burn out.

Life is going to get HARD.

And that is when we point her to Jesus.

If we don’t stay in a posture of love, she will never feel safe with us.

The Holy Spirit does the work of convicting, and He can do that with anything. Even a self help book.

Erring on the side of love sets us up to speak LIFE when she really needs it. When her heart is tender toward the truth and she wants to know who made her for MORE.

Jesus, friend of sinners
We have strayed so far away
We cut down people in Your name
But the sword was never ours to swing
Jesus, friend of sinners
The truth’s become so hard to see
The world is on their way to You
But they’re tripping over me

Always looking around but never looking up
I’m so double minded
A plank-eyed saint with dirty hands
And a heart divided

Oh Jesus, friend of sinners
Open our eyes to the world
At the end our pointing fingers
Let our hearts be led by mercy
Help us reach with open hearts and open doors
Oh Jesus, friend of sinners
Break our hearts for what breaks Yours

Jesus, friend of sinners
The One whose writing in the sand
Made the righteous turn away
And the stones fall from their hands
Help us to remember
We are all the least of these
Let the memory of Your mercy
Bring Your people to their knees

Nobody knows what we’re for
Only what we’re against
When we judge the wounded
What if we put down our signs
Crossed over the lines
And loved like You did

You love every lost cause
You reach for the outcast
For the leper and the lame
They’re the reason that You came
Lord, I was that lost cause
And I was the outcast
But You died for sinners just like me
A grateful leper at Your feet

‘Cause You are good
You are good
And Your love endures forever

And I was the lost cause
And I was the outcast
You died for sinners just like me
A grateful leper at Your feet

*****

First section is adapted from/inspired by Rachel Hollis’s quote: 

I love Jesus, and I cuss a little. I love Jesus, and I drink alcohol. I love Jesus, and some of my best friends are gay. I love Jesus, and I adore hip hop music. I love Jesus, and I totally read romance novels where vampires fall in love with librarians or school teachers or female detectives with a tortured backstory.

⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

If you're looking for someone who's perfect, you've come to the wrong gal. If you're looking for a community of people who are just like you, you've come to the wrong tribe.

⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Diversity is our jam.

Judgment is our enemy.

Encouragement is our aim.

⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

I love everyone AS THEY ARE and if you're in this community, that means you commit to loving everyone as well. You know, just like Jesus would do.

I am a Christian but I fully love and accept you and want to hang out with you if you're a Christian or Muslim or Jewish or Buddhist or Jedi or love the opposite sex or love the same sex or love Rick Springfield circa 1983. Not only that, but I think the ability to seek out community with people who are different from me makes me a stronger, better version of myself.

There are so many different versions of each and every style on this planet. There is beauty in that dichotomy. The kingdom of God is in that dichotomy."