There he stood, in the midst of the Golden Corral restaurant, with Thousand Island dressing dripping from his hair, over his glasses, down his face, all over his jacket, pants, and shoes. A waitress carrying a two-gallon container of Thousand Island dressing for the salad bar had been caught by the swinging doors of the kitchen, which knocked her forward, launching two gallons of dressing all over this guy. His response was immediate, and he started shouting and cursing at her.
“You’re so stupid! I can’t believe you could do such a stupid, stupid thing. This is a brand new suit, and it cost me $300!”
His wife chimed in, “Yeah, you’ve ruined my husband’s $300 suit, and it’s the first time he’s had a chance to wear it.”
“I want to see the manager!” he screamed.
The manager came out and asked if there was a problem, and the man replied, “Is there a problem? She’s ruined my $300 suit. It’s brand new, and I want a new suit!”
“No! No!” he cried. “I don’t want my suit cleaned. I want a brand new suit, and I demand a check for $300 right here and now.”
To avoid a bigger scene, the manger went back into his office, wrote out a check for $300, and handed it to him. Justice was served.
Tragically, this true story happened at noon on a Sunday. Now, why would someone be wearing a brand new suit on Sunday? Do you suppose he had been to church? Do you suppose that he had just heard a sermon on “Love your neighbor as yourself,” or “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” or “Go the second mile”?
Jesus-style love is the opposite of the world’s power-based, rights-protecting, accomplishment-equals-importance viewpoint. Christian love means putting the other person first, seeking the other person’s well being, regardless of what it costs. To “love your neighbor as yourself” is best described in Matthew 7:12, “Do for others what you would like them to do for you.” In other words, love God supremely and love other people purely is the Bible in a nutshell. It is the beginning and the end of the way God intended life to be lived.