The Bridge Is Out
Once upon a time a peaceful little village was hit by a destructive storm that blew trees down, damaged homes, and washed out the bridge over the big creek. The day after the storm everyone worked together to clean up and repair the damage. The little village only had two churches and the pastors were best of friends and often worked together on projects that benefited their little community.
The pastors printed a banner and stood down by the highway to hold it in plain sight of all motorists. The banner read, "STOP! THE END IS NEAR!" the first car came speeding down the road, the driver smiled and waved at the preachers, sped around the curve, and they heard the screeching of tires sliding on the pavement, followed by a loud SPLASH! One of the preachers looked at the other one and asked, "Do you think we ought to change our banner to "BRIDGE OUT"?
That is a strong argument for us to make the message plain. The scriptures tell us to "speak the truth in love." There is a form of sentimental love - I call it "sloppy agape". Some think to have love we must approve of everything. To approve of destructive behavior is not real love. You have not done a person a favor if you with hold the truth and love them all the way to Hell.
When the bridge is washed out I want someone to tell me the bridge is out. Don't worry about my feelings, tell me the truth. I will know you love me enough to keep me from being badly hurt.
Two college roommates had not seen each other for manty years. They met at a convention in Philadelphia and had many hours together catching up on old times. In college they had both been Agnostic. One of them had become a Christian but he didn't want to offend his agnostic friend so he didn't mention his faith.
Just before they parted ways at the airport, the agnostic said, "I have heard you have become a Christian." The Christian acknowledged that was true. The Agnostic then replied ,"Do I understand you believe the Bible, you believe there is an eternal heaven and Hell? And you believe because I am not a Christian I will spend eternity in Hell? You call yourself my friend, yet you have been with me 3 days and didn't mention it! What kind of monster did it make out of you? If I believed what you do I would be shouting it from the rooftops!"
SPEAK THE TRUTH IN LOVE!