A young woman was nervous about meeting her boyfriend’s parents for the first time; she wanted to look her absolute best.
As she glanced at herself in the mirror, she noticed her black pumps looked a little dingy. So, she gave them a fast swipe with the paper towel she had used to blot her breakfast bacon.
When she arrived at her boyfriend’s home, she was greeted by the parents and their spoiled, cranky poodle.
The dog got a whiff of the bacon grease on her shoes and followed her around all evening.
At the end of the evening, as she was getting ready to leave, her boyfriend’s parents said, “Cleo really likes you, dear, and she is an excellent judge of character. We are delighted to welcome you into our little family.”
This is one way to be accepted!
Everyone loves to be accepted by others.
Since we live in a sin-cursed world, unconditional acceptance is rare.
Most people, including believers, tend to accept others on the condition that they measure up to their expectations.
We, as believers, can and should accept others unconditionally.
How? It is through Christ’s power, as we read in Romans 15:7:
“Therefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God.”
We have been accepted by Christ by grace through faith.
When we accept Christ as our Savior, we are unconditionally loved and accepted by Christ because of what He has done on the cross for us.
Since we have not done anything to earn Christ’s acceptance of us, we should freely and unconditionally accept each other.
It changes people’s lives when we truly accept them.
People are free to be themselves and do not feel pressured to measure up to our expectations.
Relationships can then be built by being transparent with each other, because we are not trying to impress each other to get each others’ acceptance.
Oh, the joy of being unconditionally accepted!
Pastor Ken Keeler, Director of Church Ministries