Last week, my wife and I bought a squirrel feeder. We had planned to buy a bird feeder and the label said bird feeder, but last we looked, a squirrel was enjoying an unexpected feast. All this got me to thinking about how one would go about defining what a Christian is.

I realize that having the label is not enough, just as the label said bird feeder and the reality was a squirrel feeder. So, calling ourselves Christian means much less than living as a Christian, in other words, bearing witness to those values taught by Jesus, such as mercy, forgiveness, welcome to one and all …

And sharing that kind, patient love of Jesus which St. Paul talked about in First Corinthians 13.

At first I was miffed that now we have a squirrel feeder, but upon reflection, squirrels are loved by God just as much as birds. I doubt God makes choices as to which of his creatures he will love more or love less.

And come to think of it, I am grateful to serve a church whose congregation has welcoming and open arms to each and every one. Here at North Raleigh we do have different opinions about all sorts of things, from politics to social issues to favorite sports teams. But we are united in receiving the grace and love of Jesus as a precious gift and, as best we can, sharing it with everyone.

–Eric Lindblade