“Thought leaders” keep telling us to dump people from our lives. You might want to rethink that …

Very popular across the social media spectrum among Christians are statements urging us to purge from our lives, like a cannon ball shot from a cannon, all those people who don’t personally benefit us or support our goals.

Such an attitude was completely alien to how Jesus Christ treated people when he walked this earth. It should be just as alien to us as well!

There’s a story about a young boy who was sent to his room because he had been “bad.” A short time later he came out and said to his mother, “I’ve been thinking about what I did and I said a prayer.”

“That’s fine,” she said. “If you ask God to make you good, He will help you.”

“Oh, I didn’t ask Him to help me be good,” the boy replied, “I asked Him to help you put up with me!”

We’re quick to drop people from our lives who are just difficult to have in our lives, and we’re fast about asking God to change them. It is true some people are tougher to tolerate than others. But have you ever considered this question: Do you put up with from others as much as God puts up with you?

You may have heard the story about the man who hated Christians. He did everything he could not only to make life miserable for them, but to hurt them. His name was Saul. Fortunately, the first Christians were patient with this guy; had they not been, we would never have known the great ministry of this man who had his name changed by God to Paul. We refer to him as the Apostle Paul. He would later write these words inspired by the Holy Spirit …

“Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love,” Ephesians 4:2.

Jesus set the greatest example of all when it comes to living out this statement from Paul. Instead of eliminating from His life all the people who were not beneficial to Him, He instead offered Himself as a sacrifice before God on their behalf and died for them. As children of God, we’re to live with and love others in the same manner Jesus lived with and loved others …

“For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in His steps,” 1 Peter 2:21.

So what’s the answer: Do you put up with from others as much as God puts up with you?