originally written 18 Jul 12
posted 17 Nov 15
photograph by: Shirley/Oklahoma/Jul 2012
Associating with people who do not have Christ in their hearts guiding them,
there are bound to be certain behaviors and/or speech that is
offensive to those who do follow Him and who seek to bring honor to His name.

Where do we draw the line?
ARE we to draw a line?

I do believe that there are boundaries we must maintain
in order to protect our own sinful nature from rising up and
gaining control over our habits of behavior and speech.

Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
1 Corinthians 15:33

However, if we completely remove our light from the darkness,
does not the dark get darker?

If we only associate with people who believe/behave the same as we do,
how do those people hear Truth or see what Jesus can do with a yielded heart?

“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness,
how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything,
except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:13-16

We are to shine our lights so that the world may see Christ in us.  
If we are so easily offended by the bad behavior of the lost that we only associate with other Christians, what good does that do?

Foul speech is offensive to me. I will not use it and I don’t really like hearing it.
That said, I have many friends whose speech is,
shall we say, more “colorful” than my own.
Should I stop associating with them because they use words I find offensive?
Most of my friends are considerate enough to filter their language around me and
I have come to appreciate that a great deal.
However, there are some who do not filter their language/behavior,
especially in times of stress.
Should I be less a friend to them? I don’t think so.

I have been chastised for associating with such people
and told I should tell them to not talk that way.

There is a time and place for everything…including admonishment.

We cannot expect Christian behavior from those who are not Christians.
Yet we do and that doesn’t make sense to me.

Wasn’t it Grace that was applied to us when we were lost and living/behaving/talking as such?
If we are to follow Christ, should we not also love people enough
to extend the same kind of Grace?

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