053 – This Man Welcomes Sinners

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Luke 15:1-10

Isaiah 53:5-6

Ezekiel 34:12

Let’s show the worship team some love. Thank you guys for leading us.

This feels

awesome.

Again, thank you Jimmy and Katie for building this podium. It is.

It is amazing.

If you have your Bibles go to Luke chapter 15 if you have the Bibles on the table is going to be on page 928.

And if there are any lingering kiddos who now wish to go

to their, to their area, Daniel, raise your hand you can follow them out, follow Daniel out if that’s what you want to do.

Luke 15 again, that’s on page 928. I came across something the other day

That’s just pretty

good thing to think about as a church. And we often talk about resurrection during Easter. You know, that’s usually the the time of the year when we really amplify the resurrection. But one of the most important things to know is that this is a continuation of Easter every time we gather. We are here celebrating the risen Lord every single week and Philip Yancey, and one of his books said, the tomb is historically empty, historically empty. And if the tomb is empty, that means Jesus is loose out there somewhere.

And by the power of His Spirit, we know where he is. He is here.

He says, I am with you always.

We focus on the resurrection every Sunday, and I don’t want us to lose sight of that. He is loose out there somewhere and the chances are, he wants to say something to you this morning through His Word

and we’re going to be continuing our series in

In the parables

and pray that God speaks to us through His Word. If you saw the movie that came out a couple years back called Hacksaw Ridge. And so it’s a great movie. It’s a story of a guy named Desmond Dawes. And Desmond DOS, was a Seventh Day Adventist. And he, he basically wanted to serve in the military, but he was a conscious objector. He said, I don’t want to I don’t want to fire or use a weapon. He wants to serve as a medic. And he was ridiculed and beaten by his own brothers in the military for refusing to do that. And so he goes through this journey of trying to continue to endure, endure, endure, and he does and he finally finds himself on the battlefield at the Battle of Hacksaw Ridge, and it was the no GIFs nothing does a really good job of depicting this intensity of the moment. And so Desmond Dawes is famous for this moment, because what happened was, the fire was so heavy on both sides that the American troops had to retreat and and descend off of the side of the hill there and

Desmond Dawes decided he was going to stay up there. Because he felt like that’s what he was supposed to do. And my favorite line of the movie is in this scene. It’s all night and his story and this is a true story. By the way, he saved around 50 people we don’t have an exact number.

But as he was up there under fire, hiding from hiding from the enemy going to get wounded, he would go and pull wounded people last saw them on a rope and then cara, pull them down, put them down off the side of the cliff for help, and people were going, we’re all these people coming from? Well, Desmond Dawes is up there. And the line that hits me the most in that whole movie, is every time he gets one and brings them to safety. Every time he rescues one and lowers them down. His hands are bloody, he’s dirty, he’s tired, but he keeps saying, Lord, one more. Help me get one more.

He does this over and over and over.

We get to

see a little bit of the heart of Jesus this morning. For the one.

Oftentimes, the Scripture talks about the beauty of the collective group of the Church of the people of God. And so when we hear about the one, it’s a reminder that God is concerned just about the group of making sure that the individual doesn’t get lost in the midst of the group.

And so with that, let’s read Luke 15, where essentially Jesus is saying one more.

verses one through 10 it says,

All the tax collectors and sinners were approaching to listen to him, and the Pharisees and scribes were complaining. This man welcomes sinners and eats with them. So he told them this parable, what man among you who has 100 sheep and loses one of them does not leave the 99 and the open field and go after the last one until he finds it? When he has found it he joyfully puts on puts it on his shoulders and coming home. He calls

His friends and neighbors together saying to them, rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep. I tell you in the same way there will be more joy in heaven over the one sinner who repents than over the 99 righteous people who don’t need no repent or who need no repentance. It’s a little sarcasm there.

Or what woman has lost 10 still or has 10 silver coins if she loses one coin does not light a lamp sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it. And when she finds that she calls her friends and neighbors together saying rejoice with me because I have found a silver coin that I have lost. I tell you in the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels over one sinner who repents.

Let’s pray God, we thank you for your word.

Help us tune our hearts to the presence of your spirit this morning. Help us be aware of what you’re doing. Help us be open to what you

Want to say to us?

We thank you for the ability to gather here speak to us through your word, through your spirit and through your people in Jesus name. Amen.

And the attributes of God AW Tozer has famously said, What comes to mind when you think about God is the most important thing about who you are.

The most important thing about who you are was what comes to mind when you think about God.

And we have to be careful of using the word The most important thing, but I think he’s right. I think that the way we think about God determines the way we live the way that we treat others, the way that we view ourselves, and having a wrong perception of God has caused a lot of damage in the church. If you’ve ever felt hostility from the church, it’s because the church has a wrong view of God.

If you’ve ever seen a Christian actively persecuting someone else, they have a wrong view of God. So it all comes back to this vision of God of what we think about God. When we think about God what comes to mind, and that’s a question I’m gonna open with this morning, as we

You think about God and who God is and how you relate to him personally? What comes to mind?

Think about your personal walk with Jesus. And what comes to mind?

What vision of Jesus do you have? Is it one where he is kind of squashing you?

One that he is just punishing you every day?

What vision do you have? That’s what we want to explore because this is this text chapter 15 of Luke has been called by many people the gospel within the gospel. It is the most clear display of the heart of God within the Gospels. And so what this text teaches us is that the personality and attitude of God is one of grace and love and truth and his priority is the last.

The last, you know, Jesus is very clear, even in this text that we’re all sinners, but his favorite way of addressing people is not you’re a sinner. It’s your last

That’s his favorite way of describing those who are far from him. Even the language far from me this reckoning the sense of lawlessness.

And what’s interesting is the word sinners and the New Testament, when Jesus uses it, he’s usually most of the time referring to those who think they’re than the inside.

Which is very interesting and controversial, which is what this text is about. You see in this message for today, what I want us to take away or three things is that Jesus challenges us, Jesus searches for us, and Jesus celebrates us, those are going to be in the three blanks. Jesus challenges us, he finds us and he celebrates us.

And this parable is one that we call an interrogative parable. That’s a fancy way of saying, this parable is meant to provoke you and to provoke me.

That’s what we mean when we say that it’s meant to disturb us a little bit.

And we figure out who we identify within the text. Just know right off the bat in any given text.

We never identify really with Jesus. We’re either the Pharisees or the sinners.

And Jesus wants us to know that up front. We see this because this the context of this is controversy. And this is where we get into Jesus is challenging us. Jesus challenges us this. So the context, the Luke, the Gospel of Luke is largely written to people who are outside and coming inside to the kingdom of God. They’re the Gentiles. They’re the people you never would have thought would have come into the kingdom. In fact, when Luke opens his narrative, he says, I’m trying to convince you that Jesus is Lord and that he is saving you. There seems to be this sense of doubt among Luke’s audience as to whether or not they’re really in the kingdom of God, because maybe they’ve been told before they’re not worthy. I don’t know. We don’t know. But we know that the primary aim of Luke is to remind people that they belong to God.

And so we see this in Luke five, at the call of Levi who was a tax collector, they say, Luke 530 it says, Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners? So the very beginning of Luke This opens up with why

Are you eating with them? And then in Luke 14, Jesus is Love does not discriminate. So we always talk about the religious and how bad the Pharisees are. Jesus sat with them too. And Luke 14,

Jesus sat with them trying to recover them. But they were so obsessed with their politics, they were so obsessed with their vision of the kingdom of God, they were so obsessed with their own power and authority. Jesus had a way of making them angry while they were dining together, because he made it about who they need to be concerned about. The poor, the sick, the marginalized, those who are far from God.

That’s what happened to Luke 14, he upsets them. And now we find ourselves in Luke 15. Again, upsetting them. They wanted to talk about politics, status and their own moral goodness. And Jesus is saying, you know, one’s good, and you need to be focusing on those who are far from God. And then the text opens it talks about he’s gathering with these tax collectors and sinners, and this is the mark of a heresy. And this is what’s challenging to me, the Pharisees and scribes.

We’re complaining,

complaining, that’s the mark of a heresy. In fact, in the Greek the tense actually could be, they kept complaining, this ongoing thing, this habitual sense of complaining.

And what we find with these Pharisees is that rather than contributing to the mission of God, they always criticize those

who they’re supposed to reach.

This sound at all familiar.

They’re critiquing of those very people who were supposed to reach in. A couple years ago, Barna released this poll, and one of the most the 85% of people who were surveyed said, What do you think about the church? What is your perception of the church? 85% of the answers were critical.

Critical.

You say, Well, that’s just because they don’t know the church. I know the church.

And I would say a lot of my time spent in the church. I’ve seen that. Unfortunately, I’ve been a part of churches that are that

Part of that we identify more with the Pharisees often doesn’t in the church than we do with Jesus who’s sitting at the table with people who are completely different than them.

The Pharisees were complaining, as telling somebody earlier today that the three easiest things to do in any given week

are to complain, to be critical of others and to be offended.

that embodies the Pharisees.

complain, constantly criticized constantly, never contributing to the kingdom of God.

Just critiquing the work that’s being done.

It seems to be non critical

is to be willing to engage the tension in the mess that comes with getting people together who think differently, act differently.

It’s willing to sit in those uncomfortable conversations like Jesus is situated himself. It’s messy. But that’s the kingdom of God. There’s tension. There’s messiness, people are working through their own junk. The Pharisees made no space for that.

In fact, there’s an old writing called the called the mail pizza. It’s going to be up here on the screen. Listen to this ancient writing from Jesus’s day about how the Pharisees and religious leaders saw

outsiders. Let man never associate with a wicked person, not even for the purposes of bringing him near the Torah, which is the law, the which is basically the Lord.

don’t associate even if it meant bringing them to the Lord. These were the religious ideas of first century Judaism or second, yeah, first and second century. These are writings from that time. This is what Jesus is up against. They have completely missed the heart of God and the Old Testament which was here to be a light to the nation’s bringing people in, but here we have,

even if it means bring him to the Lord, stay away from them.

We may not believe that in practice or in speech, but in practice, this does represent a large body of the Western 21st century evangelical American church.

We say this often here the modern church often says

I’m as you are so long as you vote, think, believe and act like us.

Where would you rather have the last to be?

Here?

We’re nowhere. So it’s a challenge. That’s a direct challenge from Jesus. As he moves into this parable, and to think about this, he says the man welcome sinners. Just the title of today’s sermon, this man welcomes sinners. He invites the mess. He invites the controversy Jesus does, and to share a meal to sit with someone and the ancient world was to say, I identify with you. I’m relating to you. There’s a covenant there. See, Jesus said a lot of things. The Pharisees didn’t have so much of a problem with the Sermon on the Mount. They had a problem with Jesus sitting with sinners.

That was the controversy.

Are you sitting with them? They can maybe understand in the previous chapter, somebody sick getting healed by maybe it doesn’t seem to think that they did, but maybe we can understand what Jesus wants to sit

sick people and heal them praise God healing sick. Yeah. But But these people,

sick people a lot of times can’t help but these people can help it. Why are you sitting with them? tax collectors and sinners? This is the way to talk about the most corrupt tax collector is not an IRS worker. Okay? So don’t call it the IRS and say you’re talking about Jesus. Okay, that’s not that’s not what that’s not always talking about tax collector. They were Jewish people

who were corrupted by Rome, placed heavy taxes on their own people, their traders.

And they would rob their own people of their provisions leaving them and destitute situations. They were some of the most hated people, for the Jews.

Sinners were the sexually immoral, the outcasts, the people who were unclean the Gentiles. You see, again from that, from that quote, we saw earlier they thought anybody who was not Jewish, was completely out of reach. So tax collectors and sinners. This is a messy world.

group of people.

So the challenge here, Jesus is challenge to us is do I find myself complaining or contributing to the mission of God?

My complainer or my contributor

this man welcomes sinners. So the question is, who do I welcome?

If we were to identify with Jesus,

who should we welcome

that sit with you and take it up with Jesus, not me.

So Jesus challenges us.

Well as he gets into the parable,

we find that Jesus finds us and john 1010 through 11 it says the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy. But I’ve come to give life and life abundantly. And this is the same chapter. This is the same part and john 1010 through 11

is where Jesus says I’m the Good Shepherd I lay down my life for my sheep. The whole purpose of Jesus laid down His life is for us to find the fullness of life according to that text. He seeks and finds us is what these parables teach. So there’s two parables ones, the lost sheep, one’s the lost coin. One’s a shepherd, one’s a woman, one’s a man, once a woman that’s actually very important. And again, the controversy continues. When Jesus tells this parable, he says, What have you have a sheep shepherds in the first century were despised. They were taught, they were taught to be the lowest of the low. So already, the Pharisees and the listeners have to identify with something up somebody who’s probably lower than they are in the status goes through with the women as well. They were if they were on their own, they were peasants. They were poor. They were not culturally valued. And the book of Luke and Acts actually highlights women in a remarkable way that no other ancient texts really does. It’s quite remarkable. So when Jesus says a shepherd and a woman they’re already getting hands off on Lolo. I wouldn’t be either one of those. No, thank you.

requiring us to lean in and see if we can identify with them. It’s a challenge.

So it begins with the shepherd.

And the shepherd parable illustrates the risk and cost of searching for the single sheep. He’s leaving the 99. Everyone’s like, what about the 99? That’s such a 99 question. What about me?

That’s not the point of the parable. If in this day, there’s a guy who had 100 sheep, he probably had help.

That’s a large flock. And typically, there’d be more than one person manning the field. So it’s not like he’s just saying, good luck. No, because he brings them back to the community, right?

So somebody is taking care of Don’t worry about the 99. Okay. He’s going after the one.

He’s going after the one for those of us who say I’ve never felt cared for I never felt valued. I’ve never felt

appreciated in life. This is the word for you that God is coming after you. If you feel disconnected, if you feel this

illusion with life saying I can’t get my life together. If there was one word to describe where I am in my life, it’s lost. He’s coming for you. Is that good news?

This is the old story of God, though. This is not just Jesus, hey, I think I’ll do this. This is rooted in the entire scripture. You see, in the beginning, everything was good. And then man messed it up. We detach ourselves from God moving in a different direction. But God being faithful has said, I’m coming after you. I’m coming after you. I’m coming after you over and over and over again. At one point in God’s People’s History, he was so fed up with them, that they would not just stay with him, be faithful to him, and he rebukes the religious leaders in the book of Ezekiel. He says you were called to shepherd the people, you were leading them to slaughter.

You don’t really care about them as basically what he says. And so when EZQ 34 verse 12, this will be on your screen, you don’t have to turn there is equal 34

Verse 12, this is God, this is God. This is not anybody. This is God saying as a shepherd looks for his sheep on the day, he is among the scatter flock, so will I look for my flock, I will. These are future listen to the future tense or I will rescue them from all the places where they have been scattered on the day of clouds and total darkness.

God is saying at one point at some point in time, you don’t know when I’m stepping in, and I will be your shepherd. And then we hearken back to john 1010. I am the good shepherd. Jesus is claiming to be God who has stepped into the human story, to rescue us to bring us back one at a time.

This is good news for the story of God, but it doesn’t come without a cost. Because the why do we ask what about the 99 because we immediately see a risk involved.

We immediately see the risk open country, leaving the 99 this is risky, this is costly.

Well, Isaiah 53 verses six

And seven say this, about the cost, but he,

the Good Shepherd was pierced because of our rebellion, you put that our lawlessness crushed by our iniquities, punishment for our peace was was on him and we are healed by his wounds. We all went astray like sheep, we all have turned our own way and the Lord has punished him for all the iniquity of all of us. So what this is saying

is that the cost for Jesus was worth it.

He,

as Tim Keller would say, is the only Shepherd to know what it’s like to become a sheep

and then be slaughtered,

sparing the lives of the rest of the rest.

This is a challenging yet encouraging comforting convicting all in one sort of emotion here. And the thing is, is what I love about this, as he says he puts the sheep on his shoulders and carries them

Back joyfully is that your vision of God when you come to repent is joy or do you feel again weighted down, crushed, suppressed, if that’s your vision of God, it is wrong. It’s out of line. It’s not biblical. He is joy filled to carry us in our brokenness, in our weakness. He’s so full of joy to do it.

He doesn’t put them on the shoulders. He would you stupid sheep. I would. You would.

He doesn’t.

I lost my dog one time and two hours to find her. When I found her. I wasn’t like, celebrate with me, I found my dog. I was like, get your butt back in the house.

Right? That’s not Jesus.

That’s not Jesus. Jesus joyfully carries

the sheep and why does he have to carry it? Because lost sheep are ultimately paralyzed. They’ve been paralyzed by fear by situation by circumstance. They are in

Mobile they have to be carried and Jesus saying you must be carried.

We can’t fight our way we can’t find ourselves as our cultural narrative tells us find yourself. The self is the problem. I can’t find it.

Jesus says, I’ve come and brought you back.

And the interesting part about here is this same parable is told in a different context in Matthew, and Matthew, Jesus apparently uses parables quite often, and the same one and for different reasons in Matthew 18. The context is one who has strayed not one who was lost, there’s a difference.

The straight is somebody who is walking with the Lord and it’s just wandering, not lost intentionally string. And so you have this picture of Jesus saying, whether you’re inside or outside, you still need me to come get you

every day.

Isn’t that remarkable? We usually look at the center

As the one on the outside, but that’s the problem. We never will have grace for those whom God wants to save until we’ve understood it ourselves. We’ve experienced it ourselves.

We have to realize that we are all in this mess together.

We are a hot mess of a church.

You know what to

you guys are hard to shepherd

as I’m sitting up here with my nice new

podium that you guys have made me think.

Okay, moving on

the last coin, so we move on from the lost sheep celebrating and heaven celebrating with neighbors to the lost coin. This illustrates the gravity of the great loss sustained.

The other one was the intentionality of going after the loss. This one talks about the great loss that the woman has endured one out of 10 coins

This is about a day a day’s worth of wage. How many of you guys would have kind of a hard time if you missed one complete day of your paycheck?

That would be difficult for most of us in here. So she has lost this coin. She’s probably a peasant woman, figuring life out trying to make things happen and all of a sudden she’s lost this coin. So she starts sweeping the house, which is hard because it was not concrete. I mean, trying to find that coin. She’s intentionally cleaning the house lighting the lamp getting into the darkness, as we would say, to find this coin and when she does, she celebrates she finds it and coins have a way of have a have a kind of a way of rolling away Don’t they? They don’t just kind of fall flat they roll away which kind of depicts what we do oftentimes in our relationship with the Lord simply roll away like a coin.

We’re being looked for

God loss of his people is like the sea went from one and one in 99 to one and 100. This is the the the man it’s it’s in

Increasing the weight of the loss. But she intentionally carefully closely looks for it. And what happens is when she finds it, she celebrates by saying, come over to my house and Let’s have a party because I found it. You’re thinking, well, she may spend the coin on the party, not the point. Again, quit critiquing. All right.

Quit complaining.

somebody throws a party, you just go, man.

Isn’t that beautiful?

Come celebrate with me. And that moves us to the last part. Jesus celebrates us.

There’s some corners of the church that say, God doesn’t celebrate us. That sounds super ego, egotistical. Read the Bible.

Come celebrate what I’ve found.

That’s not a mark

of many churches. And I hope that it’s a mark of here that we will celebrate what God is doing, and we will celebrate it. You see, in the beginning, heaven and earth had this union where God was with man and

was with God they were in the same space the garden was a beautiful temple of God’s presence.

And that ruptured heaven and earth completely torn apart.

And so what we find when Jesus celebrates when he’s telling us to celebrate here, he’s What is he brought the coin what is the coin then brought back to the collection? What is the sheep them brought back to the fold? There’s a communal dynamic here that’s so important and often miss Yes, it’s about the one but the ones coming into the mini to find celebration and joy. And so when we find people who are lost when we realized that we are lost, and we are in part of the community, what happens is a community that celebrates in a community that celebrates the work of God is a community that is in touch with the heart of heaven. That’s what it looks like to have heaven as it on earth as it is in heaven, celebrating the work of God.

When Jesus says Let Your kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven, this is part of it, celebrating and searching for the last company.

Heaven reconciles heaven and earth

are we joyful for those who are coming in?

And this community

is celebrating two things repentance

and the community itself. And this is what I mean by this. So repentance in this text,

there’ll be more joy over repentance when you hear the word repentance. What do you think? Do you feel suppressed? Do you feel

squashed? What do you find joy? So the biblical vision of repentance is that when we repent, we find freedom and joy.

squashed Look what you did. Remember in the garden, God didn’t say what have you done? He says, Where are you?

You’re not looking to squish you. He’s looking to find you.

Repentance is being found by God and in this text that we don’t see.

Anything about God about what it looks like to actually repent and I think that’s intentional. You see, this text is teaching that God won’t let you go and that God will get you.

He is taking the complete initiative to come and get you.

That’s this text next week, we’re going to look at what happens when God does let you go.

So there’s two sides here, God’s initiative and our responsibility.

This week is about his initiative to go out and get us.

And so what this means for repentance is repentance begins when we allow God to carry us back.

That’s where repentance begins. That’s what this text indicates. He says repentance or what is this repentance? What begins with God getting you?

repentance begins with God grabbing us out of the wilderness.

In fact, client Snodgrass, expert on the parables. He says the

He says God is not passive waiting for people to approach him after they get their lives in order he has seen he is that he has these seeking God who takes the initiative to bring people back regardless of how lost they are.

And what I love about this is that he’s bringing them back into community. This is where celebrating because notice, who celebrates one sheep, who celebrates one found coin, a community that is so close, that the deepest the even the slightest loss, affects them all.

That’s the sort of community that celebrates it when they care so much for one another. They care when someone has lost something even slightly,

where their sorrow is together, but not only when their sorrows together, they celebrate

what God is doing again,

that’s the type of community that celebrates one out of 100 sheep. That’s the type of community that celebrates one found coins.

One that’s close. And I my part for the table is that we are a close community but not a closed

community

one of our values is growing in community and that doesn’t mean numerically that literally means growing within the context of a community.

Yesterday we had a house gathering where we embody this growing and community was so good to see a lot of you out there we had a lot of fun.

The cupcakes for the love of all that is holy we’re

not ashamed of smuggled six of those things home

and

everyone in the everyone in the group was playing the humility card. Oh, I’m good. I’m gonna move.

Forget that man.

The

Beauty about yesterday of our gathering that we had out of Dugan Margot’s was to see everyone connect at a deep level to celebrate when I was with you guys. I was having conversations with many of you and some were celebrating things that were happening in life somewhere sorrowful over things that were happening in life, but it was being felt together.

Together. And that was the beauty.

I hurt my toe playing soccer.

You laugh, it was

intense. I kicked nails in the ankle, and he’s fine. I’m not. But you guys are really concerned about my big toe.

But let me tell you, if you limp away from a church cookout,

that was a good cookout. That means you cooked out better than any Baptist

in the valley.

We did it right. We celebrate within the context of community. So what does this mean for you? as you go about your week,

there’s two application points and then we’re going to move into our response the application for you as the first one is to show dignity and value

every person, every person, no matter where they are, who they are, what they believe how they live, is intrinsically stamped with the image of God. And that means they have infinite value to God. And we ought to as Jesus see everybody, those who are in and out of the church with the redemptive vision of Jesus, we see them for who Christ wants them to be, not what who we think they should be, who Christ wants them to be.

And that means we show love, Grace, compassion. Everyone says, what about the truth? Jesus is more than honest in the text. I’m sitting with sinners. I’m sitting with tax collectors. He’s not trying to beat around the bush. But he understands Jesus understands this, this dynamic of what happens

when you actually view people in the way in which they were created. They feel valued, they feel loved when no one else would ever show them value in love. We say this often here. No one has ever been hated into the kingdom of God.

And if you have

one image you haven’t.

The second application for you is to show hospitality to those within our reach.

Show hospitality to those within our reach Jesus, he never shouted at sinners. He sat with them.

hospitality.

He wasn’t aggressive, he was empathetic. And Jesus is a genius of redemption. One because he planned it, but to he understands how people are relational.

The context of relationship is the more is the most effective, I should say, way of evangelism.

Standing on a street corner shouting maybe every now and then works, but in the context of the relational space.

That is the most effective way to reach people is to invite them into your space and tell

them, don’t just tell them show them through your hospitality love and care how God has reworked and redeemed and recovered you.

Hospitality supreme ethic of the kingdom

now for the response

guys show value and dignity and show hospitality. Gotta say it again.

When people come into this space, the expectation for those who call this their church home is to be hospitable and show value and dignity to everyone.

That’s an expectation of those who call this their church.

And we take that pretty seriously.

The response I want to just comment on the word on lawlessness here you see the lost sheep and lost coin illustrate that we are just as lost as we can possibly be, whether we are Christians or whether we have strayed

or whether we’re just lost. What this is important, the response

This provokes is one that God comes after us. And ultimately that every sin that we engage, every sin that we engage, is actually when you get behind it when you get behind the action. It reveals a soul thirst and a soul search. Our souls are there want to be found, but we try to find ourselves in various ways.

every act of addiction, every act of sexual exploration outside the confines of what God talks about is conducive to human flourishing, every point of gossip and slander behind those actions.

There’s a soul thirst that is looking to be satisfied, significant and secure.

Every drink from the bottle

we always obsess over the action.

I love what Philip Yancey said there’s a soul thirst behind it.

And when you get behind that you begin to

empathy for people and awareness of yourself.

All these things I’m doing it’s because my soul wants to be found.

This is not going to be up there. But I want you to listen to Barbara brown Taylor real quick.

She talks about that she says in my life, I have lost my way more than I can count. I have set out to be married and ended up divorced. I’ve set out to be healthy ended up sick.

I set out to be a parish priest planning on spending the rest of my life caring for souls, to any congregation that would have me almost 30 years later, I teach school.

She concludes while none of these displacements wherever pleasant At first, I would not give a single one of them back I have found things while I was lost that might that I might not have ever discovered if I had stayed on the path. I have lived through parts of life that no one in her right mind would ever willingly have chosen finding enough finding enough overlooked treasure and all of them to outweigh my projected wages in life that I had planned.

These are just a few of the reasons that I have decided to stop fighting the prospect of getting lost and being lost and engage it as a spiritual practice instead. And what you’re saying there is I’m okay with realizing that I need to be found not fight my way through spiritual difficulty. The Bible is a great help to me in this practice since it reminds me that God does some of his best work with people who are truly and seriously lost.

repentance and restoration begins when we understand that we are truly lost.

Philip Yancey says this. I have settled on this God gets his family back from the first book to the last of the bible tells of wayward children and the torturous links to which God will go to bring them home. Indeed, the entire biblical drama ends with a huge family reunion

and the book of Revelation

Just take a moment just set your things aside, pen down phone down.

And I want I want to ask you a couple of questions that I’m going to give you just a couple seconds to linger with.

As we move into conversations.

When you think about God, what comes to mind?

In the garden, God says, Where are you?

How are you responding to that question?

take about a minute and just reflect on where are you

now close with prayer.

God, we thank you that you get your family back.

We pray for a joyful spirit of repentance for anything that’s keeping us further from you and hindering the fullness of life that you promise as the Good Shepherd.

Help us reorder our lives and redirect our lives according to your word, and powered by your spirit. In Jesus name, amen. Amen. If you’re not at a full table, fill one up and just spend the next couple of minutes having some conversations. All right.

guys take about two to three more minutes and kind of wind wind down it will return

service in just a second. So three more minutes.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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