Tonight I was watching The Blues Brothers for the upteenth time. This is one of my all time favorite movies. It’s hilarious but it is also set in my favorite town, Chicago. I mean heck they give one of my favorite address ever as their address to cover up the tracks of criminal activity they have done, 1060 W. Addison. The address of my team, my Mecca, Wrigley Field. But as much as I love Chicago and Elwood and Jake, I got something from this movie that usually is taken as a joke because of the people who are saying it. The famous line from the movie “We’re on a mission from God.” But tonight it hit me. We are on a mission from God. This is a line that I have heard a ton of times. As I said earlier I have seen this movie countless times but I never took this line seriously because it is just a line that the boys say in this classic film.
But we are on a mission from God. We the followers of Jesus are on a mission from God. That mission is to tell people about a Savior and be a part of the greatest ministry ever, the ministry of reconciliation. The ministry of reconciling the world back to Jesus. This is the greatest news and challenge that we as Christians can ever be a part of. Reconciling the world to Christ through our actions.
Last night I posed the question to my youth group, “If Jesus was at your school every day, who would he hang out with?” For some they answered quickly saying that Jesus would hang out with their group of friends. For others it took them a bit to come up with an answer to the question. One of my volunteers teaches special education preschool, she has students with Autism, in wheelchairs, and other disorders that make these sweet kids developmentally a little slower than others. Her response was very good but not out of selfish gain, “I think Jesus would hang out with my class, because my kids are the one pushed to the fringe because of their disorders.”
Why are these sweet kids pushed to the fringe of society? What has made society say that these kids aren’t just like every other kid? Why as Christians have we pushed them to the side? Because it makes us feel awkward to love on them? Because we aren’t disabled?
Another one of my kids answered, “I think that Jesus would hang out with the kids who are sitting alone at lunch” In that moment i was so grateful for that answer. Jesus did not go hang out with the “popular” people during his time on earth. In fact he was hated by most of the popular people for the things that he did. He went to people who were not considered great by society. So if we are following Jesus, why aren’t we doing the same? And this is not to say that I am doing it at all. This is a call out to myself. Why do we stop loving people well when it is awkward? If we are on a mission to reconcile the world to God why do we sometimes exclude people from that ministry?
We have been blessed with so much. Now it is time to give of our time, talents, and what we know to serve the Lord through this great endeavor that God has called us to do. So when you think you can’t go over to the person who always eats lunch alone or the person that no one wants to be around at the office, I want you to think of Elwood and Jake. I want you to think, I am on a mission from God. Maybe that ministry of reconciliation comes through just loving others with no holds barred. If so, let’s start loving everyone. Yes I said everyone. That means the outcast, the broken, the special needs person, the hard to work with person, and the hurting.
God did not give us the ministry of reconciliation so that we could choose who can or cannot. God gave it to us so that we who know Jesus and the good news would go share it and show the love. There was a thing when the US Supreme Court made gay marriage legal that was #LoveWins and now that I think of it, #LoveWon. It won long ago when a man named Jesus, who was from Nazereth a town that people made fun of because not many great people had come from there, died on the cross. Love won long ago. But we don’t show love because it is uncomfortable. So this is a challenge this week. Love those who are hard to love this week. Love those who could use some extra loving this week. Love the person that goes unnoticed. Love your neighbor. Love all those people and everyone who I didn’t mention because you’re on a mission from God.
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