“Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.” (Matthew 18:32-35; NIV)
I feel bad for celebrities and politicians, well, let’s face it, they’re celebrities too.
The way their activities are under a microscope and put in front of the world to see. Especially with the rise of social media and cell phone cameras, nobody is safe.
Recently, many of these celebrities have been burned by their past. A large amount of them have flaws and have made disgusting and poor decisions, which are being brought to the forefront of the newsfeeds.
It is truly sad.
It isn’t sad that they are being caught or revealed. It isn’t sad that they are being held accountable. It isn’t sad that they are being forced to reflect on their actions and realize how gross and negligent they have been.
What is sad is how everyone acts towards them.
The only reason we are in an uproar is because we have seen what they have done and read their stories.
We have heard apologies. We have seen some actions that show true remorse for their subpar character.
Yet, I still see people demolishing them and making them out to be beasts without souls.
I hate hearing of sexual harassment. I hate hearing of adults misusing their authority to take advantage of young people. It is wrong and they should be held responsible for their exploits.
I despise racist tweets and stupid snapchat photos. I truly am surprised by the immaturity and poor judgment of many individuals.
However, I have to be careful to control myself from viewing them as less than human.
I am flawed. I am broken. I am sure I have done things that I would be ashamed to have brought to light, although I own most of my mistakes and speak of them openly.
I need grace. I accept grace from Jesus. I know many who have accepted the grace given to them by Jesus, yet fail to give the same grace to those who are just as undeserving as they are.
Why is grace so hard?
We forget our flaws when we compare them to people who seem “worse” than us. We measure ourselves with those who seem to go beyond what is “excusable”.
For instance, I have lied to people, but at least I’m not a thief. My little lies are excusable, but if you steal you’re considered scum. I lied to save my rear, the thief stole to eat. Who is worse?
I have said mean things about people, but at least I didn’t kill them.
Wait? Jesus said what?
“You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.” (Matthew 5:21-22; NIV)
Well, that’s not fair! I want to be able to hold a grudge and judge those who murder. I want to call people names and declare them eligible for hell because they killed someone, and I can continue to hate my neighbor.
This is what we all have to remember, especially if we follow Jesus, we are all eligible for hell, but the grace of God has given us life. We cannot declare someone else ineligible, especially if we don’t know their heart.
We cannot forget that Paul was Saul, a persecutor of Christians, before becoming a follower of Jesus and the greatest missionary ever. Jesus saw him for something more and allowed the other disciples to see it too.
We have to be able to forgive and let God sort it out. We hold people accountable. We bring their deeds to the forefront. Allow them to explain themselves and apologize, if needed. Then, we let God be the judge.
We don’t deserve grace, but we have been given it.
Just because our flaws aren’t in front of a camera, doesn’t mean they don’t exist.
May we be kind to each other, even in our brokenness. May we remember our faults before we judge others. May we remember, even those who are unrepentant, are created by God.
Peace and blessings friends.
*Updated post from November 2017. This post originally shared on http://bobby benavides.me