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Thursday, November 13, 2008

November 13: Acts 11

Here is what God is saying to me through this chapter: This chapter opens with Jewish Christians taking issue with Peter for eating in the home of a Gentile named Cornelius (vv.1-3). Devout Jews don’t eat with Gentiles, and yet Peter did. It was important for Peter to build a friendship with Cornelius to share the good news, even if it meant Peter had to put his religious traditions aside. Peter recognized that, while many traditions are good they should not prevent us from loving God and loving people. I have been in the church long enough to see how sometimes Christians are better at drawing traditional lines in the sand than we are at building bridges to people. The challenge for Peter and those first Christians is the same as the challenge facing us: How do we maintain both our personal holiness and our loving embrace of people?

Here is what I will do today because of what God is saying to me: I’m at a place in my Christian development in which I really don’t care what “religious” folks think of me if I reach out to those who may be on the religious community’s hit list. While I don’t want to offend anyone, I would rather offend religious traditionalists than clueless seekers. I will continue to challenge myself and the SWC to grow deeper in our holiness, not a holiness that draws us into a huddle away from people but a holiness that actually moves us out toward all people in love.

3 comments:

Brad said...

Amen, Pastor Lenny! It is easy to have fellowship with fellow believers. If we don’t reach out to the clueless seekers, we will add nothing to God’s Kingdom. The Greatest Commandment is to love God and love everyone. Not to only love our friends and family, but also our enemies and those who are difficult to love. Jesus leaves no room for hate in this commandment. He also requires us to forgive everyone who may have hurt us. I will continue to love and reach out to everyone, including those who need it the most!

Lenny Luchetti said...

Thanks Brad. Taking your thoughst further I'm going to say something that may sound a bit controversial. I believe that as we're growing closer to Christ it's actually easier for us to be around clueless seekers, even if they're engaged in sinful behavior, than it is for us to be around self-righteous, exclusive, and traditional religious folks.

maria said...

What a great chapt this is I like in verse 18 where it says They heard and seen things and they became silent and glorified God. Our God is such an awesome God. It to reminds me to love those who are seekers because you never know how God will use you when you reach out to people in Love.