Christ Accepts You

Growing up, I had a lazy eye. I think I still have it, but it’s not as lazy anymore. Anyway, part of the therapy for my lazy eye was wearing an eye patch. You know, like pirates wear.

In the third grade, I started wearing this thing for an hour or two each day during class time—and wow, you would have thought I was an actual pirate by the way my classmates looked at me. I could feel their judgment and rejection. Later, the jokes started coming in. I’d previously been called names for wearing glasses—but now this? It was devastating.

I remember sitting outside one day, watching the other kids play, when my best friend, Michael, came up and asked me what was wrong. He was in another class and didn’t know about my eye patch. I was scared to tell him about it, fearing that he would reject me too.

Finally, I fessed up and told him about having to wear the eye patch and what people were saying. I looked at him expecting rejection, but what I got was excitement and jealousy. Michael said, “Dude, you’re like a pirate. And who doesn’t want to be a pirate!”

Shocked and a little puzzled, I didn’t know how to receive this acceptance at first. But from that day forward, I wore that patch proudly.

It’s amazing what acceptance does to a person. In this world, most of us are familiar with rejection, which is why acceptance is a hard word for many of us. If you’re like me, your experience is more rejection than acceptance.

Whether it’s your physical appearance, something you’ve done recently, or something you haven’t done, we all fear rejection and we all need acceptance. The good news of Christianity is that on day one—moment“one—we’re as accepted as we’ll ever be. God approves of us. And He promises to never reject us, no matter what.

He’s saying, “In every moment, even in every mistake, my opinion of you never wavers. I’ll always accept you and love you.” Even at your worst, God still adores you. He still approves of who you are. He still wants you, no matter what.

Knowing our acceptance and our identity in Christ means that it’s okay for us not to feel okay. Our new identity allows us to look at the lies our feelings are expressing and replace them with the truth of what God says.

I lived my entire life trying to prove myself. Prove myself to my parents, my friends, and to God. I never thought I was good enough. I always thought I had to do more. What the world offered was never enough. I had my high moments, but those things never satisfied.

The one thing that satisfies me now is being known, accepted, and loved by Jesus.
Tom Brady is a professional football player. He has everything the world says a man needs—money, a model for a wife, and all the attention he needs. He’s considered by some to be the greatest of all time at what he does. In an interview after his third championship, he said he felt like there had to be more. He didn’t feel that what he’d done or earned was enough. He didn’t feel satisfied.1

Wait, I thought all those things would satisfy. They don’t. They didn’t for Tom, they didn’t for me, and they won’t for you or anyone else. That’s why we continually see celebrities taking their life, getting busted for drugs, or admitting they’re miserable.

Followers, likes, friends, popularity—what this world has to offer cannot satisfy our deepest need and desire. We all need and desire love and acceptance. The good news is that in Christ, we have all the love and value and acceptance we’ll ever need.

You don’t have to prove yourself to God. You’re accepted, pleasing, and made right by faith; there’s nothing to prove. This means God likes you for you, not what you can do for Him or what you bring to the table. Hard to believe, huh? But that’s the beauty of God’s grace. It’s scandalous. It doesn’t make sense. We live from God’s unconditional acceptance of us, not for it. This means we obey, serve, give, and love others from God’s approval and acceptance of us, not for it.

Our biggest fear is that if we’re “found out,” people will reject us. They’ll think we’re frauds. We desperately want to be known, but we also fear that if we’re fully known, no one will like us. So we hide. We fake it.

But God fully knows you. Every mistake. Every weird thing. He knows it all, and yet He still loves you. He even likes you. You’re His favorite. You’re fully known and fully loved by Him.

Do you realize what this means? You’re free to fail. You’re free to mess up. You don’t have to get it right in order for God to accept you or love you. That’s what’s so radical about the gospel: it’s not about you! You don’t have to perform perfectly in order to be loved, accepted, or pleasing to God.
The pressure’s off. And when we recognize that the pressure’s off, we start realizing, I no longer want to fail, because I know I’m accepted and loved by the God of the universe.

God is reminding us that what others may see as flaws, He sees as cool. So don’t be afraid of your eye patch.

God’s next to you, wearing one too.

Hearing God’s Opinion
“You’re safe to be you. I don’t want you to hide. I don’t want you to be like someone else. I accept you. All of you. I love living inside of you. You and I make such
a great team. I’m so proud to be your God. I’m never ashamed to be associated with you. Your sin doesn’t surprise Me. I’ve seen it all and I’ve taken it all away. I know everything about you, and guess what? None of it makes Me change My mind about you. I enjoy you!”

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you.
Romans 15:7 NIV

1 Super Bowl 2019: 60 Minutes Looks Back at Tom Brady in 2005,” 60 Minutes, January 30, 2019, at-tom-brady-in-2005-60-minutes/

No Comments





no categories


no tags