I worked for a restaurant in college whose slogan was “Better and Different.” It was ahead of it’s time. Problems were called opportunities and servers were given the authority to comp a dessert if something had happened to mar the customers experience.
As believers, we are called to be different. We are also called to excellence. You might say we are called to be “better and different.”
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
But sometimes in Christian circles it doesn’t happen this way.
My oldest and I were talking this evening. It’s been hard to move on. It’s been hard to trust again. I’m ashamed to say that I found my mind wandering and wondering if parts of a sermon I heard recently were the Pastors words or if he had plagiarized them. I went as far as to search online to make sure. I knew without a doubt that those words were not stolen from someone else but the previous betrayal had caused me to doubt. It had nothing to do with that Pastor, it had everything to do with the previous betrayal. I am ashamed that I can’t trust right now. But I also know that as time passes, I’ll trust again.
I reminded my daughter (and myself) that people will always hurt us. But God is faithful. We are called to be better and different, but it only comes through God at work in our lives. It’s nothing we can do without him. And even then our spirit wrestles against the good that God wants to do in us and we fail. That’s the entire reason the Gospel is so important.
Without the Gospel there would be no hope of healing. No hope for the future. Our world would be bleak. We’d never learn to trust anyone.
But we can’t continue walking in fear of what others might do to us. We can’t draw into ourselves and walk alone. We must have faith that God knows exactly what we need when we need it. We must trust him even when we don’t understand why or how.
This is what better and different is. Walking in faith knowing that God not only has our back, but he’s ordained every step. Knowing that no matter what ugly behavior and words are thrown our way. No matter how betrayed we’ve been, if we’ve been sold into slavery, falsely accused, imprisoned and left to rot in jail. God has not forgotten us. What he’s allowed is for his good and perfect purpose. A purpose we don’t always understand but a purpose we can trust.
I would never again want to walk through this world without Jesus by my side.