Friday, March 8, 2013

The Gospel Is For Outsiders

I feel like I'm always on the outside. I'm the one looking in. Even the word "insider" sounds more welcoming and accepting. The word "outsider" sounds creepy and lonely. But that's how I feel most of the an outsider.

Standing talking with a group of moms after church - I'm the one with older children. Sitting at lunch with other women - I 'm the one with the mundane stories and the boring insights. On Facebook - I'm the one with fewer friends. At work - I'm the less credible one, less educated.

In my family - I'm the least successful. Among my friends - I'm the worst. In the mall - I'm the one not put together (in fact, I'm the one with little makeup and yesterday hair dashing in for a quick purchase)

In my class - I'm not the A student
On my block - I'm the one with less money, an older car and a dirtier roof.

For all the ways my heart feels left out, God assures me of my real status.

And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him Col 1:21-22

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. Eph 2:4-7

Although once alienated I have now been reconciled to God. It means I am an insider now. I have been brought in by the God of the universe to live with him now and forever in eternity. It means I am not now nor will ever be separated from him and his kingdom - no more peripheral views. I am not only in the front row, I am backstage. God has raised me up and seated me with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. What!?! This surpasses any dream of being included with the most popular, powerful, influential people. I am standing in the middle of the most powerful group ever! And here's the deal - it wasn't my straight A's, my money, my great job performance or my lack thereof that got me there. It was two simple words "But God" that guaranteed my status. Beloved daughter of the Most High King is my name. Beautiful and well pleased is what God says about me. Welcomed and accepted is the banner over my head. 

Lord help me to daily believe this truth. Help me to know you have picked me up from the outside and placed me in the center - the only status that matters. Amen.

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