by A.W. Tozer
And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. First Thessalonians 5:14
Our Lofty Idealism would argue that all Christians should be perfect, but a blunt realism forces us to admit that perfection is rare even among the saints. The part of wisdom is to accept our Christian brothers and sisters for what they are rather than for what they should be.
We do not wish to excuse the laziness of the saints or to provide carnality with a place to hide, but it is necessary that we face facts. And the plain fact is that the average Christian — even true Christian — is yet a long way from being like Christ in character and life. There is much that is imperfect about us, and it is fitting that we recognize it and call upon God for charity to put up with one another. The perfect church is not on this earth. The most spiritual church is sure to have in it some who are still bothered by the flesh.
An old Italian proverb says, “He that will have none but a perfect brother must resign himself to remain brotherless.” However earnestly we may desire that our Christian brother go on toward perfection, we must accept him as he is and learn to get along with him. To treat an imperfect brother impatiently is to advertise our own imperfections.
by A.W. Tozer