I’ve been thinking about the idea of tolerance lately. Recently I was told that, as a Christian, I shouldn’t practice tolerance towards certain sin natures. “Stop the tolerance!” keeps being voiced in my direction. I just can not wrap my mind around not having tolerance for another human being’s ways…sinful or not.
Tolerance is defined as:
The ability or willingness to accept something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior, that one does not necessarily agree with.
Recently I met a man that decided he should be a woman…
I had just finished singing the song Broken Hallelujah. I hadn’t planned to sing it that night, because I had sung it once already that morning. It just so happened that a woman asked me, just before I was about to go on stage, “Can you please sing Broken Hallelujah again?” And of course, I obliged. When the music was over…When the guitar was packed up…When the music sheets were tucked away, a tall woman made her way to the front of the church. A tall lady that looked like the world had been rough on her. She was trying to hold back her tears. She was trying to not be too noticed. She broke my heart before she even spoke a word. Her eyes made their way to mine and she said, “Thank you for singing that song.” Her arms wrapped around me and she just held me tightly. I silently prayed for her…she just held on. I thought about something I had read recently, “Never be the first to end the hug.” I just hugged. She eventually backed up and looked right into me…With her hands on my shoulders, she said, “Thank you.” All I could say was, “God bless you.” And I meant it. I really meant it. I couldn’t put my feelings into words for this broken person – For this person that just wanted to thank me for singing this song…This song that says:
When all that I can sing is a broken hallelujah,
When my only offering is shattered praise…
Still a song of adoration will rise up from these ruins,
I will worship You and give You praise…
Even when my only praise is a broken hallelujah.
She walked away and someone stated that she was a man. Not one time did that thought cross my mind. When I saw her, I saw brokeness. I saw a woman that needed to be loved. I saw God’s child.
I’ll never know exactly what compelled that individual to come and be so raw – be so real, with a complete stranger. My heart tells me that it was the Holy Spirit…Guiding that person to someone that would love – Someone that would see beyond the obvious – Someone that would tolerate. What I do know is that if I weren’t tolerant, I would not be able to love.
When I look at my own life, I see my filthy ways – my sinful motives – my sailor’s mouth – my selfishness – my judgmental nature. I can’t see all of that in the mirror and then turn to you with my finger pointed. I need to be tolerated. Every single day I struggle with my sinfulness…Every. Single. Day. Please choose to tolerate me…Please see the person that is beyond all of this ugliness…Please love me in spite of myself. Please tolerate me. I promise I’ll do the same for you.
Thank you for reading…This was an impactful moment in my life that I just had to share. All my love. All my heart.