As I continue to try and put down in type the thoughts swirling around in my head this week regarding the Body of Christ, I listened to such a wonderful sermon yesterday about the “inclusiveness” of the Cross.
Here it is (and link below as well if this doesn’t work…because me and technology..you know) :
//grace360.org/th_gallery/colossians-focus/ March 19 Jesus the Reconciler <3
All are welcome to the grace and mercy of God .
And yet the exclusiveness of the Cross is this.
It is only for those who will receive and believe.
This warmth I shared about the Body on Monday is often criticized as judgmental and yes, sometimes we in the Church come across that way but can I let you in on a little secret?
At least for me, when I found freedom in Christ, I took on His mission AND in the process of being transformed I took on His heart.
So yes…He loves me…and He loves everyone.
But I understand down deep in my spirit that, while yes, salvation is about God so loving the whole world that He gave His only Son; it doesn’t stop there.
There is a response that has to happen… we have to RECEIVE this.
And in order to NEED salvation, people have to acknowledge that they have a sin problem.
So when the world and sometimes church people act like we can’t talk about sin because we might offend someone…yeah…I get a little passionate.
And when, political correctness attempts to quench the Holy Spirit by affirming people in their sin to protect their precious identity, I get downright panicky.
It’s not that I am judging other people’s sin.
It’s that I fear in my soul that somehow they will miss conviction.
Those are the times I want to be like Maria in The Sound of Music and run back into the convent. I want to shut the doors on the world and just embrace the holiness of the inside of that Church Body I love so much.
But God won’t have it.
He is a pursuing God…the radaph of God burns deep in our bones when we belong to Him.
We pace the crest of the hill, with Him, scanning the horizon for the prodigal.
We love the rich young ruler, with Him, watching sadly as the man who has everything reluctantly grabs his bank account and walks away from the One Thing that would have given him the eternal life he longed for.
We extend dignity, in His Name, to the woman at the well who seems to need more than her fair share of second chances to get it right.
We weep, with Him, over those who are consumed with the Pharisee spirit…even if they are disguised as liberal and conservative law makers who are trying to force the traditions of man on a deceived public.
We are His hands and feet and we are His reputation.
We learn His ways in His word and then we walk them out.
We stumble…and we grab that Hand that is ever extended.
It was GRACE that saved us and so yes, we extend GRACE…
but always IN TRUTH…WITH LOVE….
It’s a hard road we walk, but we do not walk it alone.
He is always…always…always…in ALL OUR WAYS…
with us <3
*The sermon is on www.grace360.org Go to “sermons” and this one is under “Colossians” dated March 19, 2017. This is a great series so I recommend all of them <3