Thursday, June 21, 2007

Who Do I Look Like?

I have been reading an interesting book by Dan Kimball called "They Like Jesus But Not the Church." The title alone sold the book to me, because so often I feel similar. I am not ashamed to tell someone I am a Christian…sometimes it leads to an immediate wall being built up and many times (if I am not given a chance) a friendship could die before it even starts.

It's funny, this impact we are making on the world as a church in America

It sure does exude the same impact Christ made…doesn't it?

Some who read this may think that I am gushy Christian guy, and maybe I am. Yes, God is spoken of as a wrathful God, He speaks of having vengeance, speaks of His anger being aroused, but let me make this point…when He was here on earth in the form of Christ, how did He react?

Sure He threw over tables, but at what? Seems to me that He overthrew tables…in the "church" when people were trying to profit off of God by selling sacrificial animals to make a profit, and He did that once.

When Christ acted in a way that anyone could say He was judgmental…He did so against the religious leaders of His day. Christ came to "seek and to save that which was lost" not to persecute the actions of the lost, not to chastise them into salvation. He also didn't mince words when someone was caught in sin, but encouraged them to "sin no more." They didn't have to pray a sinner's prayer, they just admitted and knew in their heart that Christ was Lord, admitting that they understood the depths of who He was and admitted that He was Lord of their life. There was a specific impact moment when they received Him as the King of their lives.

I love the fact that Christ would regularly be seen "hanging out" with lepers, the sick, blind, former prostitutes, tax collectors (trust me they were more hated then than even now), fishermen, farmers, and the every day person. Who did He ridicule? Us, the church people who thought we were so high and mighty looking at life through our glasses of self-righteousness.

To wrap up, let me ask, how many of Jesus' friends were "Christian" when He met them? How many "unsaved" friends did He make throughout His time on earth? He did make a few friends in the religious sect, but primarily, who were the people He sought out?

Just think about the video above, He didn't seek those who were "fixed" or at least thought they were. He sought out the broken, thrown away, hurt, and lost. He then gave of Himself, painfully so that all who come can have this life of freedom He offers.

Thank God He loved me…and He loves the broken, and yes, He even loves the ones who point their fingers in indignation at those whom Jesus would call friend.

We are in a desperate hour, our time is short and we must remind ourselves who Jesus was, and is, and model our life as closely to His as we can. We can't BE Him to others, but His characteristics should be upon us as we walk this world bearing His name.

So humbled is the simpleMan

(P.S. This is not an excuse so that everyone can go out and do as they want, just realize that some who do the things they do, do not know any better. I often think if we "disciplined" our children the way we "reach the lost" we would have a population crisis...point is, stop beating the babies!)

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