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Outside Where Jesus Is

Outside Where Jesus Is

16 July 2010

Today’s Reading: Isaiah 25-28; Hebrews 13

Scripture:

The altar from which God gives us the gift of himself is not for exploitation by insiders who grab and loot. So let’s go outside, where Jesus is, where the action is—not trying to be privileged insiders, but taking our share in the abuse of Jesus. (Hebrews 13:10, 13 MSG)

Systems favor insiders. Whether it’s about political systems, business systems, social systems, or even (especially?) religious systems, systems favor and tend to be operated by and for the benefit of insiders. One of the first things religious systems do is decide who’s “In” and who’s “Out.” It’s way too easy to become Christian “Insiders” rather than Christ-follower “Outsiders.”

Jesus was an outsider to the religious system. He was God’s Son, but he didn’t live like a privileged insider. He went outside where the needs are. He took his message of life and hope to the streets and villages. Jesus gave his own life as a sacrifice outside the city. Jesus was the consummate outsider.

“Let’s go outside, where Jesus is, where the action is!” This is a powerful command. It’s like a direct prophecy to us. My life can get so wrapped up in “inside stuff,” in the part of ministry that involves tasks and meetings and “church stuff” that I have hardly any relationships in my neighborhood and little involvement in my community.

…God takes particular pleasure in acts of worship—a different kind of “sacrifice”—that take place in kitchen and workplace and on the streets. (Hebrews 13:16 MSG)

It takes conscious, intentional effort to fight the gravitational pull of “Inside” and go “Outside” where Jesus is, where the action is. I must take personal responsibility for God’s word to me and find a way to act on it. Let’s learn to be partners with Christ-followers who are going “Outside, where Jesus is, where the action is!”

Prayer:

Father, We live our Christ-follower lives against the powerful gravitational pull of “inside.” Help me in this season of my life to be very intentional in turning my attention outside, where Jesus is, where the action is. I know that you don’t want a knee-jerk reaction and that it’s not either-or but in fact is both-and. Please help me with this. Amen.

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