Series Big Idea: A Questionable Life
Weekend Big Idea: Questionable Relationships
Throughout Jesus’ life we find him eating and spending time with people the religious elite of his day considered very questionable: prostitutes, drunkards, people on the margins: women, the poor, and ethnic minorities. He even ate with tax collectors who were considered the lowest of the low, as they were traitors who were willing to extort money from their own people in order to make a living. Even so, Jesus was invited into their homes, he shared meals with them, and even included some of them in his inner circle of closest followers.
So, who would some consider to be the “questionable” people in my world? Would it cause some heads to turn if I spent more time with people who were of a different religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation? Would people question me if they found me giving significant time to people who don’t talk like me, believe like me, or look like me? Then it occurred to me that I may be the only version of a Christ-follower some people have the chance to know. And if I’m not showing love to all people, especially those whom others may consider questionable, then what version of Jesus are people really seeing in me? Certainly not the version of Jesus that offered love and respect to prostitutes, included lowly shepherds as among the first to hear of his arrival, and gave women opportunities that were only reserved for men in his day.
This whole notion of “questionable” people and relationships left me with this thought: The fact that Jesus loves a messed up, selfish, ungrateful sinner like me? That is a questionable relationship. I am the one who is questionable. People should question why Jesus would hang out with me. And on my good days, I recognize that. And on my bad days (which are more than I care to admit) I don’t. I fail to realize how undeserving I am of his love and grace; like maybe I am good enough; and others aren’t; like I’m ok, and well, you know “those” people, well, I’m not so sure about them. Thank God, Jesus still loves someone even as questionable as me!