Be For, Not Against

I’m bummed today.

This Starbucks Red Cup thing is frustrating. If you haven’t read anything about it, read this here.

I’m frustrated because Christians haven’t seemed to learn their lesson. In a world looking for reasons to be angry at or indifferent towards the church and other Christians, we tend to give them plenty of reasons.

As long as we continue to allow a tiny minority of irrational, self-serving Christians (those who draw attention to themselves by raising issue over inconsequential matters), we will continue to be known as people who are always against the wrong things, and never for the right things. It’s also shocking to me, despite being a tiny minority of Christians who may hold the view that Starbucks “hates Jesus,” they get the massive platform the media provides.

But it’s already too late. Even though this voice is represented by the extreme minority of opinion, to the world, it appears all Christians must be against Starbucks and their new red cups.


Even if you have issue with Starbucks, please remember that the world will not be attracted to Jesus because you are against a design on a cup. In fact, they will be as opposite as attracted to Jesus can be – you will give them further reason to be repulsed by the religion you follow and the person you claim to emulate.

Remember, the world will be attracted to Jesus because of what you and I are for, not against. Let’s be FOR love, hope, joy, peace, sacrifice, and generosity. Let’s be FOR a God that can and will bring about the kingdom in and through our lives. Let’s be for, not against.

Discounting Potential

Jesus left that part of the country and returned with his disciples to Nazareth, his hometown. The next Sabbath he began teaching in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed. They asked, “Where did he get all this wisdom and the power to perform such miracles?”

Then they scoffed, “He’s just a carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon.” Mark 6:1-3

When people encountered Jesus, they were generally amazed. It’s a word that comes up a lot in scripture. Amazed.

And when amazed, they were left with a decision – they would either follow and believe in this man who amazed them, or they would call it evil, or offensive, or magic.

But I noticed something extraordinary in this passage. Rather than any of those usual responses, the people responded by discounting the potential of Jesus.

He’s JUST a carpenter.
He’s JUST the son of ordinary parents.
He’s JUST from an ordinary family.

How often do we discount the potential in other people?
Maybe a better question is: How often do we discount the potential in ourselves?

I get it. He’s Jesus. We’re not. However, as followers of Christ, we’ve been forgiven of sins (one half of the incredible equation) AND we’ve also been given the righteousness of Christ (the second half).

I am not JUST a man from Longview, Washington.
I am not JUST a man of ordinary intelligence.
I am not JUST…

With Christ, I am so much more than JUST my circumstances, my past, and my ordinary-ness.

The same is true with you: Don’t discount your potential. In Christ, you are more than JUST _____.
You are a conqueror, capable of more than you think possible, all because of the righteousness given to you by Christ, the one people originally tried to write off as JUST.

Don’t discount your potential. Eliminate the JUST.