Holy > Nice
Sometimes love feels like a punch to the gut.
As anyone who has been to a wedding knows, “love is patient, love is kind.”
But it ain’t always nice.
One of my favorite exchanges in the gospels takes place in Luke 11. Christ criticizes the Pharisees for their hypocrisy. We read “woe to you” many times.
A scholar of the law then says to Jesus, “Teacher, by saying this you are insulting us too.”
It’s about to get much more painful.
Christ continues, “Woe also to you scholars of the law! You impose on people burdens hard to carry, but you yourselves do not lift one finger to touch them.”
We can point to many examples from the gospels when Jesus was nice, but what he always showed was love. And sometimes it’s tough love.
Niceness is great most of the time, but being nice is not the be-all and end-all.
Christ doesn’t want his disciples only to be nice. He wants them to be holy.