I like salt as much as the next person.Well, probably more than the next person, if I’m honest… as a child, I loved winter snow because there would always be huge buckets of rock salt just sitting around unattended.
That’s right… I ate it.
By the fist full.
God only knows what kinds of chemicals were included, and it’s a miracle that my stomach even has a lining now, but here I sit, healthy and chock full of delicious sodium.
I usually prefer salt to sugar, so if you offer me a ham (NOT honey glazed, you fiend) or a cake, I will take the ham every time (unless you honey glazed it… *eye roll*).
Salt, as we’re all aware, adds tasty, tasty flavor to food stuffs of all kinds. and asks as a preservative for scrumptious meats (SALT PORK, ANYONE?!?!).. but even I’ll admit that some things are too salty.
Would you like some examples?
There’s Campbell’s soup, for one.
Or Stovetop stuffing, if you try to make it with chicken broth.
There are some Christians that are too salty.
Christians have three things: A rule book, a understanding of the concept of absolute truth, and love. These three elements combine to make us just salty enough to influence and flavor. If you just have the rule book and the truth with no love, it’s too salty. It’s harsh and unpleasant and overpowering.
What you’re saying may be 100% correct, but what have you gained with your truth if no one will ever listen because your salt is not tempered with love.
And if you come back with “The Gospel is OFFENSIVE”, then I will issue a ringing, teeth-jarring slap to your face in Christian love, because that statement does not give you a pass.
If a woman wants to get an abortion, you, as a Christian, do not have to agree with her decision… and if this woman knows that you are a Christian, she’s probably quite aware of the Church’s stance on the issue… but calling her a baby killer will not bring the mother any closer to Jesus.
Whatever decision she makes, your job is to love her. Feel free to state your position, but you love her regardless of the decision she makes. You act as salt in her life… you’re not meant to be the main dish, but you begin to bring our flavors and influence her in the hope that she will grow closer to Jesus (and since that’s a life-long process, you aren’t finished once she’s gone down to an altar).
Your job (calling, if you will) is to show people to Jesus. Even if you never lead anyone in the sinner’s prayer, your life should be spent bringing people closer to Jesus.
How many of us have accomplished that by engaged in a vitriolic Facebook debate over homosexuality?
Has anyone ever walked up to you in tears, begging to know this incredible God that you speak about because of the sign you were holding in the air detailing how many groups were destined to burn in hell?
If your next door neighbor (who is not a Christian and therefore not obligated to live a Christian lifestyle) were to describe you, how many four-letter words (you know, like “jerk”) would be used?
How many times have we held lily white hands in the air and sniffed, “In the world, but not of it?”
Salt all by its lonesome might have been a delicious (albeit gut-burning) snack for adolescent me, but it’s not useful, and it’s ultimately not healthy. Some of us have lost our saltiness completely. No one knows that we’re Christians, we’re not influencing anyone, but some of us are WAY TOO SALTY and we make the Gospel unpalatable… people automatically plug their ears when we talk, not because of the Gospel’s “offense” but because we’re mean, hateful, pushy, judgmental people.
We’re walking pillars of salt… instead of flavoring, we jump down people’s throats, burning their insides and raising their blood pressure. Our churches are giant salt licks… fantastic for the deer population, I’m sure, but l don’t think actual people are that interested.
Maybe we all need to attend a cooking class so we can understand how salt operates.
Maybe we need to talk about what love tastes like.