If you brought your family to the Cinco de Mayo celebration in St. Paul on Saturday, you were definitely not alone. Trying to push my son’s stroller through the packed Cesar Chavez Street past the cars with cool paint jobs and the booths of fresh Mexican food was pretty difficult. There was a lot to take in all at once.
But the thing that I remember most vividly is something that has nothing to do with the celebration. There was a guy on a platform at the very end of the street, a bible in one hand, and the other hand pointing down at me and yelling. I couldn’t push the stroller fast enough away from that man. It was awkward, and uncomfortable, and it was scaring my 3 and 8 year old.
Now, I’m not the type to stand on a street corner and start telling people about Jesus, yelling or not. I’m not even good about sharing Jesus at all. It’s something I need to work on. But what I saw didn’t feel right either.
So, when I got back in the van with my kids, we had a talk about what we experienced. They wanted to know what the guy was doing. I told them he was trying to tell others about Jesus, but maybe not in the best way.
I was thinking about how Jesus reached people. He didn’t yell, at least at the “sinners.” He did get angry at the people that pretended to be religious and better than everyone else though.
And for the people who were searching for truth, Jesus was gentle, full of love, and willing to tell them the things that they needed to hear. Not with a raised voice and with anger, but with an open heart, ears that listened to their problems, and unconditional love that covered their sins.
So, I’d love to hear how you found Jesus, because I think that the way I can best reach others with the Love of God, is by showing love, in a way so outrageous and unconditional that people will ask, “What’s different about you, and how can I be like that?”