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The Word for Today

by Bob and Debby Gass

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‘Look at the birds in the sky!’ Matthew 6:26 CEV

Lost and stray geese are always welcomed into the formation. It’s not an exclusive club for the elite. Birds separated from other formations, isolated by weather, accident or infirmity, are given full family status. The formation will alter its plans, reschedule its arrival time and inconvenience itself to accommodate any strangers seeking its acceptance. Many newcomers arrive dirty, bedraggled and ill-fed. They’re never turned away. In the same way, God’s church isn’t a museum for masterpieces—it’s a hospital for those who have been hurt by life, even self-inflicted hurt. Jesus said, ‘All…who are weary and carry heavy burdens…’ are accepted. (Matthew 11:28 NLT) ‘I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also… there shall be one flock and one shepherd.’ (John 10:16 NIV) Christ has no higher agenda than to recruit, save and adopt the stranger into His flock. You say, ‘But they’re not my kind of people; they don’t look, talk or smell like me!’ So what? We don’t get to choose our biological or spiritual siblings; God does. If they rub us like sandpaper, they’re helping rub off rough edges and polish us up. Want to see the material God builds the church with? Prepare yourself for a shock. ‘The unrighteous… fornicators… idolaters… adulterers… homosexuals… thieves… covetous… drunkards… revilers… extortioners… And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.’ (1 Corinthians 6:9–11 NKJV) When we were taken into the formation we were washed, sanctified, justified and given full family status!

SoulFood: Is 8–11, Jn 6:1–24, Ps 126, Prov 27:17–19

The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2023

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