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Living with Low-lives

It’s easy to hate religious zealots but it’s hard to not to love a guy like Jesus.

The passage below does a great job summing up Jesus’ approach to friendship.

Notice who Jesus hangs out with. One thing is for sure, he wasn’t seeking the limelight or popularity polls. Quite the contrary, he was hanging out with a known bunch of lowlives!

Shortly after Jesus meet an unpopular local figure, Matthew the tax collector, his new buddy was throwing a party. Jesus was hard to miss at the center of all the fun!

Don’t miss the most beautiful part of the story. It’s easy to focus on all the hoopla surrounding this small gathering of scum buckets and pass right by the unconditional love, utter acceptance and genuine friendship that was on parade.

This crowd of bandits had gotten use to being judged, put down and marginalized. But with their new buddy, they were having fun, celebrating and caring much less about what the local pious religion folks had to say or think.

It kind of makes you wonder where you would have found yourself on that day, doesn’t it? Would you have been popping the top off of a few cold ones or popping off barbs and stingers at the losers painting the town red?

I think Jesus loved to have fun and to party. Especially with folks who didn’t always find themselves as part of the “in” crowd.

Sometimes we need reminding that Jesus wasn’t a real fan of religion or man’s traditions. He did teach us to love God and love others.

One thing is for certain, Matthew was a changed man once he made friends with Jesus. The carpenter from the little town of Nazareth tended to have that affect on people. Yeah, he didn’t come to judge the world but to save it. To save it from itself, others and the sin that holds us all back from life to the fullest.

Read this little passage below, you sorry ole’ sinner, and then ask yourself, like Matthew, how could you resist having a friend like Jesus?

Matthew 9:9-13

As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at his tax collector’s booth.

“Follow me and be my disciple,” Jesus said to him. So Matthew got up and followed him.

Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners.

But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?”

When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor-sick people do.”

Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”

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