All Fall Down

Is Grace in My Wake?
Last night someone I admire as a spiritual mentor made a “joke” based on an  ugly racial stereotype.
It would have been an “open mic” moment, wherein the celebrity/politician/media whipping boy of the week is publicly captured making a comment meant to be kept private, except:
1. We’re not famous, so no microphones follow us around.
2. It wasn’t overheard; it was a direct statement.
I was dumbfounded. My facial expression reflected my shock and horror at his words. He said, “I shouldn’t have said that” and the conversation took a more pleasant turn.

How could this godly man say such a thing?

The answer, of course, is simple. Like me, he’s human. We’re imperfect. We err.  

Later, talking about it with my husband, he offered me this verse:
23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.
Romans 3:23 (NLT)
And I realized I have an important choice to make. I can allow this single episode to color my opinion of this man, or I can give grace, focusing on my friend’s many excellent qualities.
I choose the latter. We’re all on the same path. We all wander. And we can all help each other to regain the course.

8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. 9 Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.
Philippians 4:8-9 (NLT)

It’s a beautiful path.