1. Because we complain:
About politics, abortion, Islam, liberal media, sex, taxes and _____________. Honestly, who likes hanging out with whiny-complaining people? You can love them, but it’s hard to enjoy them. Serious is not a fruit of the spirit; complaining was not part of the plan. Jesus was a happy friend of sinners. And notice how little He had to say about the brutally corrupted empire He lived in.
“Our task is not to protest the world into a certain moral conformity, but to attract the world to the saving beauty of Christ.” Brian Zahnd / Beauty Will Save The World
2. Because we preach to them but don’t feed them:
When I tell people about our adoption, or our work in Puerto Rico, their hearts open to hear the rest of our God story. The world is hungry for a life that is beyond itself. They are looking for joy, purpose and sacrifice. But the church keeps trying to lure them with riches, success and power.
Jesus preached to the crowd of 5 thousand and then He feed every single one of them. Somehow we want to preach to the crowds and get them to feed the preaching few. #Backwards
I know that good works won’t save anyone… but they reveal the One who does.
“A materialistic world will not be won to Christ by a materialistic church.” David Platt / Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream
3. Because we sin (while telling them we don’t):
And then we call them the sinners (like I have done). You see, we all fail! And the world would be way more attracted to us if we just admitted that. Jesus never sinned but He was comfortable with his humanity; and that made Him approachable.
He experienced hunger, anger, tiredness and pain. And we know He did because He experienced those things while in the company of others. He was not afraid to be real, to be weak, to be human.
“With Jesus there is no us and them – there is just us.” – Greg Boyle / Tattoos on the Heart – The Power of Boundless Compassion
4. Because they read the comment section in our blogs:
Jesus said that the world would believe we were from God when we became one with each other. It was His last prayer before the cross. His ultimate request to the Father. And He’s still waiting for the answer. (John 17)
Check out my top 5 posts in HappySonship.com and you will see what I mean (and I’m just as guilty as anyone else).
“We must have unity, not at all costs, but at all risks. A unified Church is the only offering we dare present to the coming Christ, for in it alone will He find room to dwell.” – Charles H. Brent / With God in The World
5. Because we forget to tell stories:
Jesus used parables and images that people could relate to. His plan was not to explain things step by step, but to open the hearts to something greater, a story that was beautiful, an upside down Kingdom.
In Luke 15 it says that the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. And then He shared the stories of the good shepherd, the lost coin and the prodigal son.
The ultimate narratives of redemption and joy.
Read more in: Designed For Inheritance / A Discovery of Sonship
6. Because we categorize sins:
And it stinks of hypocrisy.
No one likes the “I’m better than you” mentality. And sometimes that is precisely what we do with our salvation, use it as a calling card for superiority.
“To Him, all sin is equally evil, and all sinners are equally lovable.” – Judah Smith / Jesus is _______
7. Because we don’t hang out with them:
Simple. Go make friends with anyone who does not follow Christ. You will quickly realize that they are beautiful and broken, just like you.
At home we got tired of teaching about this, so we started to engage. And in a weird way, making non-Christian friends has saved us just as much as it has saved them.
“Befriending someone so that you can evangelize them is manipulative and undermining of trust.” Christine Pohl / Friendship in the Margins.
8. Because we don’t heal them:
Jesus did. And that makes all the difference.
When people are in pain (physical and/or emotional) they are open to anything that heals. They just want the pain to stop. And Jesus healed every kind of disease and sickness for everyone that came to Him.
It’s time to rediscover the supernatural ways of our way.
“If you assign ten new believers the task of studying the Bible to find God’s heart for this generation, not one of them would conclude that spiritual gifts are not for today.” Bill Johnson’s book: The Power That Changes the World
9. Because we ourselves don’t go to Jesus:
The Bible is clear, We love because He first loved us. It starts and ends with Him. And it’s very possible that we have little to offer to our lost generation because we are lost ourselves. We need fresh bread… and we all know how enticing fresh bread smells!
“My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn it or deserve it.” Brennan Mannin / The Ragamuffin Gospel
If you enjoyed this post, I’d be very grateful if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter or Facebook. Thank you!
Jonathan Merritt said it best, “Christ preached the Kingdom everywhere he went, but He also indiscriminately and unconditionally forged relationships with those at the margins of society, offering them a seat at the table.”
I’m praying for a move of God that finds us saving the lost as oppose to saving Christianity. I hope awareness help us get there.
“Be like Jesus: Spend enough time with sinners to ruin your reputation with religious people.” – Joshua Harris: Humble Orthodoxy