Loving the Broken

Raise your hand if you're someone who's got broken pieces. Lift it high if you have made choices in your life that should exclude you from heaven. Wave it from side to side if you've ever done something that has hurt those around you.

If you don't have both hands doing their best version of a 2000's raise the roof move right now, you'd be lying. I see those of you in the back of the class, trying to hide your raised hand. Every single one of us have done things in our life that we're ashamed of. Each of us have done things that cause us to fall short of God's standards.

And yet, it's so easy for us to sit in our self-righteousness and act like our lives and destructive choices don't cause as much damage as "those people".

You know who I'm referring to here... users, abusers, homeless, the hurting, those who take advantage, government officials, and any number of family members who you absolutely can't stand, the guy that treats the McDonald's cashier like a verbal punching bag...

The list goes on.

And on.

Can I just tell you all how grateful I am for the grace of Jesus? For having a Savior who looked upon me in my dirtiest, unworthy, most broken state, and STILL made the choice to give His life on a cross so that I might have life? And how ashamed I am to admit that often I completely forget that fact when I am faced with others who are broken in ways I don't understand?

Jesus extended grace to me when I did not deserve it, and so I am expected to extend grace to others. I want to be like Jesus. And that means seeing the brokenness in others, and actively and intentionally choosing to extend the grace and love that Jesus freely shared with me. Only when we live a life of grace and extending the hope of Jesus by the way we treat others will our communities be transformed.

Does this mean allowing people to manipulate you and abuse your trust? Absolutely not. But it does mean that we give people the opportunity to hear about the goodness of Jesus. It means that we treat people with a respect and grace that they may or may not deserve. It doesn't necessarily mean letting people who have hurt you in the past get close enough to do it again, but it does mean letting go in forgiveness so that you are not holding anything over anyone, and so that you're releasing that burden from your own heart.

So... how does that translate to Chico? I'm sure there are some people and places that have already come to your mind. Here's your homework, just to start this journey of grace - make a list of 3 people close to you that you need to extend more grace, and then start praying for those folks. See how that transforms your own mindset and attitude.

Let's be known in Chico as people of grace.

1 Comment

Ron Zimmer - August 18th, 2020 at 12:18am

I love it! Thank you for the reminder to practice the habit of extending grace and mercy. The more we practice the better we get!