June 8

Written by Bill Grandi on June 8th, 2023

We will often use or hear used a saying: “I really have to walk a fine line.” We use that phrase when we are trying to describe the “fineness” between choices. Some might use it to describe the slim difference between right and wrong. Or we might use it when describing whether to say or not, whether to do or not do something.

One of the struggles the church faces-and it has always been this way-is the battle between truth and love. Someone has put it this way: “All truth without love is legalism (and I might add harshness); all love with no truth is mere sentimentality.” It is a fine line between being repulsive to the world because of our stand, and yet be attractive to the world because of our love and care.

See the point? There are those who are hard-liners…no bending whatsoever. “You must stand your ground even if it offends” and I agree we should not compromise. But that ground should be stood with love in our hearts not belligerence.  That is the fine line. How much “stand” vs how much love?

There is a battle going on between isolation and assimilation. Do we withdraw or do we just drift with the cultural? You have probably heard this quote in some form: “The boat is to be in the water, but its bad news if the water gets in the boat.” That is the constant struggle. And while we are debating the rights and wrongs of things, the world has wormed its way into the church. For example, while we have debated the rightness and wrongness of say, same sex attraction (and for the record I do believe God is very clear that He created us male and female), the church has become inundated and has allowed false teachers who tell people God owes them special blessings because they are people of God to infiltrate our defenses. Seems like the classic example of misdirection by the enemy. Get them to focus on this and I’ll slip in under the radar with this.

We do walk a fine line between acceptance and love. Love and truth always go together. It’s a fine line but one we need to thread and navigate carefully.


6 Comments so far ↓

  1. Ryan S. says:

    I think God is definitely trying to get our attention here… or at least mine. I think we all tend to sway one way or the other in regards to Grace and Love vs Truth and Obedience. The interesting thing is exactly what you have stated… It is a balance, a fine line. Without one, you lose the impact and reason for the other. I also think there has been an unrealistic expectation from the church in regards to how non-Christians should be. I have to continually remind myself that the culture of this world is not of Christ and I cannot expect the culture to behave like Christ. I do think there is a level of expectation that we should have for those who call themselves Christians, but… and this is a big but… Grace and love needs to abound. WE ALL SIN, WE ALL NEED GOD’S GRACE!
    So what should our response be to the world… to the culture we live in? I don’t have to celebrate or support sin. The culture is pushing hard to force acceptance of all. I will not celebrate or support sin. I deal with enough of my own sin to invite more in. I will continue to stand on what I believe is the unwavering foundation of truth. But… and again big but…. My motive needs to be founded in LOVE.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Well said Ryan. I am glad to see others are struggling with this same issue of the “fine line.” I know I’m not alone but it is always good to hear others speak up. I think you make a really great point in that we need to remind ourselves the world will not act like the church in regards to how we see sin. That is such a great point to make. Thanks for the openness of your thoughts.

  2. We absolutely need to stand on the truth, Bill, but if we lack love in doing so, we are devoid of God’s grace and mercy. It is a fine line to walk, but if we put our trust in God, He will never fail to see us through.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      That lack of God’s grace and mercy is what concerns me Martha. If we don’t have that we come off as some judgmental rule giver. I don’t want to be seen as that. But I do want to be respected as one who loves while standing for the truth.

  3. gail says:

    It’s a tough balance to speak the truth in love but to also ensure who you are speaking to doesn’t feel like the truth is a brow beating, it should be a calm loving speaking tone. The enemy wants you to lose control, he wants you to blow it so that your testimony will have no effect. There are times you have to walk away, or let comments go. You have to ask God to give you another opportunity with this person to speak the truth. You can always say, I want to discuss this with you, but let’s take a break on this for now, and come back when we both have our thoughts and opinions organized, so that we can discuss things without emotional outbursts. God wants you to represent Him, and tell His truth, He will help you do that in a way that is full of love, truth, grace, understanding. God can take the seeds we plant and cultivate that person’s heart. We have God’s victory on our side, God will orchestrate our thoughts when we surrender the conversation to Him. God promised, so give in to God and not the enemy who wants to see you fail.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Lots of wisdom here Gail. You speak truth on so many levels. Our testimony must be winsome but also true and convicting. As you state, there may be a need to take a break and come back to it. We must speak truth but compromise while saying it.