Categories: Church

Pentecost 12 September 1

Today we hear the call to look beyond the familiar, to look around the edges of our known community and beyond our comfort zones. We are called to deliberately seek out the overlooked. We are called to look directly into the eyes that others avoid. Maybe that person is someone you would typically avoid because you don’t agree with them politically. Maybe it’s the person next to you in worship who attends every week but doesn’t feel like they belong.

When we live into this call from God, surprises abound! After all, the blessings of living in God’s community are discovered in all the varied people who are part of it, not just in our corner of it. As God opens our eyes and hearts to those ignored by the world, or to those we would choose to avoid, our assumptions are shattered—and the strangers in our midst are recognized as angels (Heb. 13:2).

The Christian community isn’t about us, and it isn’t up to us. In truth, if it depended on us, we ourselves would never belong. We were all on the fringe until God reached out to us in baptism, joining us to a community that never stops growing. We were all outsiders until Christ died to give us life and form us into one body. How could we ever keep that abundant life to ourselves?

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