This is how the story goes:
Thursday morning I had a few errands I had to do. One was grocery shopping. Not only did it take me 3 hours to shop, I was exhausted from pushing the 70 lb cart around. I pulled up to the house and heard a few screeching noises as I got out of the van. Walked up to the house and it was even louder. I thought to myself, I know Jonah's not playing video games on a work day! I opened the front door and the noise was so loud I promise the pictures on the walls were shaking. And then I hear "hahaha they are chasing after you, you better get them." That was the voice from Alan.
Alan, (as most of you know) is a homeless guy who lives anywhere he can find a place to lay his head. Sometimes he's even found sleeping standing up. Mission U-Too has been serving people like Alan for 5 years. He is just one of "them" that we secretly talk about, mock, slander, and walk away from. Alan has been homeless for 4 years. It's not because of alcohol or drugs, it's because he was put on the streets for not taking care of his house and allowing other homeless people to live with him. He lost his parents and wasn't able to take care of himself or the house he was in. Instead he did the best he could do, while helping others.
Just as the bible tells us Jesus did LIFE with his disciples. He "hung out" with the tax collectors and prostitutes. Yes, Jesus Chist did hang out with sinners. Yes, He did hang out with those who were doing wrong in their life. However, we must understand why. Jesus Christ was NOT hanging out with these people because He preferred them to the righteous. He was NOT hanging out with them because He enjoyed sinful behaviors. He was NOT hanging out with them because He wanted to be exposed to wickedness.
Mark 2:15-17 reads: "And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him. And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners? When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they are sick: I came NOT to call the righteous, but the sinners in repentance." Jesus proclaims His purpose is to call sinners to repentance.
Back to my story:
I didn't know at the time if I should have been happy, excited, scared, angry, upset. I had been sick all week leading up to Thursday and my house was not kept up the way it should have been and Jonah was bringing people into the house, knowing how I felt about an unkept house. I continued to put the groceries away while listening to Alan and Jonah finish their video game. Alan was laughing and commenting on every move that Jonah made. He was enjoying himself and Jonah would gather in on the laughter and comments.
I began to change my mindset. What does an unkept house have to do with "hanging out" with those we are loving on, with those who battle illness, with a sinner, with a homeless man, with an unrighteous person. Alan didn't care my house wasn't organized and the floors weren't mopped, he was enjoying the air conditioned house, with a comfy couch, and most importantly someone who would listen and join in on the conversation. All Jonah and Alan were doing was just simply "hanging out."
I believe that we are ALL called to do ministry if your a believer in Christ. We are to make a difference in someone's life and witness to them just like Jesus did to the sinners. It doesn't have to be a homeless man, or a prostitute. The person can be someone in your life right now that you know are not a believer or maybe they are and they have turned away from Christ. All it takes is a little bit of your love, Jesus' light, and a simple conversation and smile to start changing someone's life. I ask you today is there someone like that in your life today, that you need to go and hang out with? To apologize and make things right? Or maybe it's someone you don't even know just simply give a hug and let someone know that you care. Max Lucado tells us "God wants us to know we are saved, for saved people are dangerous people, willing to face off with the world, unafraid of the consenquences since they know that, whatever happens, they will have eternal life."
John 15:9 I love you just as the Father loves me; remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father's commands in his love.
~Go hang out with someone and make a difference in their life.
Peace and love to all