I wonder if I, and the people at my church, would be willing to become a church of “misfits”. I put misfits in quotes because we are truly all misfits in one way or another, but I’m thinking of those the church culture and the world would label “misfits”.
– welcome someone with tattoos and earrings (they aren’t bad, but the perception is the people behind them are) to come worship beside us?
– be excited to welcome the drug addict or the alcoholic?
– invite the socially awkward co-worker or neighbor who gets overlooked by everyone else?
– befriend the ex-prisoner who is looking for stability?
– embrace someone from a different culture as easily as we do ours?
Even better, do we…
– know any of these people?
– want to get to know them?
– invite them to our church?
– give up time with our friends to spend with them?
– sacrifice our time to seek these people out?
– risk getting out of comfort zone to serve these people?
– think Jesus cares about them?
– think our answer to that to last question is backed up by the way we live?
I have a hard time answering those questions. I like a nice, safe life. I like Sundays where everyone is nicely dressed and smiling. But life is different than that and we’re only fulling ourselves if we think church should be that way. Christ came for the broken. He came for the outcast. He came for the downtrodden. He came for the sinner. People didn’t have to pretend like they had it all together around Him so why should people have to pretend to have it all together at church?
Hopefully, one day I’ll see people as Christ saw them. Maybe one day my church will be a place where people can be broken and share their pain. Maybe one day I’ll seek out the hurting and broken instead of waiting for them to magically appear. I want to Become Last to these people and not pretend like they don’t exist. I want them to know I care about them. I want them to know I’m screwed up too and anything they’ve done or are is nothing worse than the thoughts and attitudes I constantly struggle with. I want them to know they are welcome in my home and in my church. That’s where I want to be.
How can you Become Last to the “misfits”?