I’m going to announce that the new word for Christian is Tim. And in similar manner:
The new word for single mom is Barbara.
The new word for homosexual is Bob.
The new word for secular humanist is George.
The new word for right-wing Republican is Larry.
The new word for left-wing Democrat is Sarah.
More than black and white, there is Sally. Rather than right and wrong there is Jason. Instead of Jews and Gentiles, there is Aaron and Will. Instead of teenage pregnancy there is Pam. Instead of abortion, there is Alison.
Do you see what’s happening here? We are personalizing life. This is how God wants us to get along in the world — surrounded by people we know. And the more people we know, the less important and the less effective labels become.
This goes for our enemies as well. Jesus told us to love our enemies — that would probably mean we would know their names. You can’t love a group or a category; you love individuals, and individuals have names.
People make labels inadequate. The more you know a person, the less it becomes possible to wrap a label around them. A person is always more complex than their description, and we have relationships with people, not concepts.
This is all important because relationships are the key to life. God is a relationship in and of Himself. “Let us make mankind in our likeness” (Genesis 1:26). He made us to broaden that relationship so that we might all be one.
Enrich your life: get more names in it. It will simplify everything.
The new word for atheist is …