Friday, August 27, 2021

Messed Up People

Have you ever crossed paths with someone professing to be a Christian who thinks they are better than others? Yeah, me too.

They don’t want to be bothered with “messed up” people. They are “religious” people who often look down their noses at these “messed up” people. They tend to only want to be around people much like themselves.  

It makes you wonder what Jesus would say about this behavior. Well, actually, we do not have to wonder. Jesus took on this subject head on.

There is a great analogy of this found in a New Testament parable Jesus shared.

Luke 10:25-37 CSB

[25] Then an expert in the law stood up to test him, saying, "Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" [26] "What is written in the law?" he asked him. "How do you read it?" [27] He answered, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind," and "your neighbor as yourself." [28] "You've answered correctly," he told him. "Do this and you will live." [29] But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" [30] Jesus took up the question and said, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho and fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him, beat him up, and fled, leaving him half dead. [31] A priest happened to be going down that road. When he saw him, he passed by on the other side. [32] In the same way, a Levite, when he arrived at the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. [33] But a Samaritan on his journey came up to him, and when he saw the man, he had compassion. [34] He went over to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on olive oil and wine. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. [35] The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, 'Take care of him. When I come back I'll reimburse you for whatever extra you spend.' [36] "Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?" [37] "The one who showed mercy to him," he said. Then Jesus told him, "Go and do the same."

Here we see Jesus illustrates this quite simply. The religious leaders crossed over to the other side of the street to avoid having to deal with a “messed up” person. They didn’t want to take the time or put forth the effort to deal with this messy situation. In essence, they did not want to get involved. 

It was the Samaritan who had compassion and stopped to help the distressed man. Keep in mind Samaritans we’re considered “half-breeds” and were looked down upon by the Jews of the day. Yet it was the Samaritan who seen a need, stopped to help plus payed what was considered two months wages to the innkeeper. Upon his departure he told the innkeeper to take care of the man and he would settle up any other expenses when he came back through  

How about us? Do we take time for “messed up” people? If our paths crossed someone in need will we stop and tend to them? Will love them and be Jesus to them? It brings to mind a chorus to a song:

Oh to be His hand extended

Reaching out to the oppressed

Let me touch Him, Let me touch Jesus

So that others may know and be blessed 


Until next time...enjoy the journey,


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