October 24, 2011
“By this time a lot of men and women of doubtful reputation were hanging around Jesus, listening intently. The Pharisees and religion scholars were not pleased, not at all pleased. They growled, “He takes in sinners and eats meals with them, treating them like old friends.” Their grumbling triggered this story.” Luke 15:1-3 The Message
What is it about Jesus that causes worn out men and women .. worn out from malignant inner selves .. worn out from malignant life-stealing lies .. and worn out by malignant-stained reputations? Rather than run or hide they seek Him out. And in the midst of everything .. they listen to Him. What is it about Jesus that causes self-supporting-upright men and women to despise Jesus for welcoming the down and out and up and out into His presence? He not only welcomes them .. He enjoys their company. They are treated as equals: ruined resumes and stain-less resumes. The truth is that “we” are all of these men and women. “We” are the worn-out ones .. the wear-it-on-the-outside ones .. and the un-welcoming ones. God’s redemptive story has been unfolding between the “right-nows” and the “always right” for thousands of years. If you are the in the “right-now” group you’ll find yourself worn out from always being left out or left off of something. If you are in the “always-right” group you’ll find yourself worn out from always being right and always being above. .. What is it about Jesus? .. He’s got time for a meal. He’s got time to listen to you .. and He knows all about what demands your time. When you’re lost .. sin-separated .. and self-imprisoned you’ll find Jesus “risking” everything that He has to find you .. bring you back .. and celebrate your life. And if not you .. then it may be someone near. Are your grumbling or grace-filling? .. What is it about Jesus? .. He just wants to become “your old friend”! It only takes a moment ..
“… There was once a man who had two sons. The younger said to his father, “Father, I want right now what’s coming to me. So the father divided the property between them.” Luke 15:11-12 The Message
Ken Chester: Grace-Gripped is sent M-F to Old Friends following Jesus and friends of Priority One (firstname.lastname@example.org)