In my study of the book of Luke I came across extensive scripture featuring less esteemed groups of people that were blessed to receive Jesus’ love as He walked among us.
The first group were women. In the times of Jesus women did not enjoy the respect from society that they do today.
According to the apostle Luke, the women that Jesus loved were:
Elizabeth (Luke 1:5-25, 39-45, 57-66)
Mary (Luke 1-26-56, 2:1-20, 41-52)
Anna (Luke 2:36-38)
The widow of Nain (Luke 7:11-15)
The sinner who anointed Jesus’ feet (Luke 7:36-50)
Women disciples (Luke 8:1-3)
The woman searching for her lost coin (Like 15:8-10)
The persistent widow petitioning the unjust judge (Luke 18:1-8)
The sorrowful women along the way to the cross (Luke 23:27)
The women who discovered the empty tomb (Luke 24:1-10)
Social outcasts that Jesus loved:
Gentiles (Luke 2:32, 24:47)
Shepherds (Luke 2:8-10)
The poor (Luke 6:20-23)
The Samaritans (Luke 10:30-36, 17:16)
Tax collectors and sinners (Luke 15:1)
Lepers (Luke 17:11-17)
What are you to make of this message? That no matter who you are, or what you did, or why, Jesus loves you. If you seek Him, seek the everlasting joy that comes with spiritual rebirth, through the Holy Spirit God will grace you with the gift of eternal life.
I am greatly troubled by the fact too many people are not interested in the precious gifts that come with a relationship with Christ. In San Francisco for a conference, I was shocked to witness grave disrespect for God’s name and Christianity in general. From conference attendees to taxi cab drivers, hotel and restaurant staff, I felt the Spirit in only two people; the first Tarry, an ex-pastor of the Navigators with whom I conversed about God’s grace, His forgiveness and the secular focus of the conference attendees. Tarry prayed for God’s peace to wash over me as I found myself inundated with despair for the lost at the conference. I prayed for he and his family to have a safe trip back to Vancouver.
The second person to give glory to God was a homeless man that stood on a corner holding a cardboard sign begging for food money. As I handed him $5 through the cab window on my way to the airport, the beggar thanked me and exclaimed “God bless you sir!” I joyfully replied “God be with you also brother!” The feeling that came with my act of generosity was truly worth full.
Though I am filled with grief for the many people I met in San francisco who seemingly live for the world, I am comforted by the two men who gladly shared God’s light. How wonderful it is to witness His love and grace among a crust filled world.
I invite you to remember the people mentioned in this message, those who were not loved or respected by society. Remember the sick, the elderly, those imprisoned, addicts or modern day Samaritans. Love widows, the poor and all sinners, just as Jesus did. God is love; we need to be his hands and feet to the world.
“By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 but whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?” (1 John 3:16-17)
“The stranger who dwells among you shall be to you as one born among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.” (Leviticus 19:34)
“Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all sins.” (Proverbs 10:12)
We thank you for all the blessings you bestow upon us.
We gladly accept the mission you have for your lives
And pray for your strength so that we fulfill your plan for us.
Lord we thank you for the precious gift that is eternal life
And for giving us the opportunity to love others around us,
Just as you did when walking among us
And as you continue to love us each and every day.
God, we pray for your joyful peace in the days ahead
As we rejoice with you and those who believe in you,
That many be awakened to your eternal grace filled light
And that they in turn spread your love to one and all.
Lord, we thank you for your forgiveness in our sins
And ask you to give us strength to obey your word
And attain wisdom from the knowledge of others before us.
Father bless us with your love and your magnificence
That we may enjoy your creations all around us
And inspire others to do the same each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre