Thoughts on Today's Verse...
Jesus' religious adversaries frequently criticized him for deliberately associating with people who were suspect in their eyes. Jesus, however, had a reason for this behavior. He wasn't associating with sinners to be popular, weird, bizarre, or hip. The Lord associated with all kinds of people because he loved all kinds of people! He came to redeem the enslaved, find the lost, mend the broken, and reclaim the sinner. Can we, as Jesus' bodily presence today, strive for anything less than this and still call ourselves Jesus' Church?
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Forgive me, Father, when I opt for security in my acquaintances and I avoid potentially messy entanglements in my relationships. Please open my eyes to see the lost, the lonely, the forgotten, and the needy all around me. Please use me to lead them to your grace and to help them find their family with your people. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.