Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Friends of Jesus?

One thing that always intrigues me about the Salvation Army is the way that everyone accepts those who do not always look like perfect 'church goers'. We know from scripture, that Jesus ran with prostitutes, thieves, drunks, and tax collectors. His disciples were not theologians, or even well educated, but simpe fisherman. Today, more than ever, we need to remember that our Founder, William Booth, began the Salvation Army for 'the least of these'--those who were not wanted or accepted by other churches.

In our daily walks, how often do we reach outside our circle of influence and friends to interact with someone who may be struggling with addiction? Perhaps a single mom without a job living on welfare? Or even approach a homeless person? Maybe our neighbor or co-worker seems to be a bit hard to get along with and rather than show them genuine love and concern, we gossip about them or just avoid them. Jesus did not agree with the pharisees of his time, but He confronted them and stood firm on what was true--God's love for all people and forgiveness for even the worst sinner. Who are we to judge or refuse forgiveness?

Luke 6:27-28 "But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you."

May God be glorified through us all, to all men and women, that they might come to know Him!