How To Neighbor
DAY 4 OF 10
We’re All Adopted
One practical way our church is trying to follow Jesus’ commands is through mentoring, fostering, and adoption. Many of our staff and attenders foster or have adopted children. Our campuses work with local partners to connect our people to all aspects of these opportunities. During our How to Neighbor series, we’re launching a partnership to make it possible for people to discover and directly help foster and adoptive families through a simple website. Here’s what’s crazy though—we’re all adopted. Not just our staff, our whole church, and all believers. According to Galatians 4:5, prior to Christ we were like children, bound to worldly law, without a father. But God sent Jesus to buy our freedom so He could adopt us as His very own. In other words, without Jesus we’re all fatherless, lonely, vulnerable captives. All have sinned and fallen out of God’s family—all have been invited back in. We’re all adopted.
Have you ever wondered why Scripture—both old and new testament—is constantly calling us to care for the captive, poor, vulnerable, and lonely? Think about it. Isaiah 58, Matthew 25, James 1, Psalm 68, and so many other Scriptures describe caring for these as pure religion, true fasting, and what separates the accepted sheep from the discarded goats. Perhaps these Scriptures are merely reminding us to follow Jesus’ two greatest commandments. Maybe we’re all orphaned, broken, lost, and captive. Maybe we’re being called to love our neighbor as Christ loved us—the way God adopted us. The way the Holy Spirit electrifies our broken self with godly power.
We’re all adopted and we’re all broken in some way. Yet, for some reason, our eyes are often blind to our brokenness while wide open to our neighbors’ shortcomings. We sometimes forget the “as ourselves” part. We reach down instead of across. We save instead of serve. We rescue instead of relate. Dr. Brené Brown, author, TED speaker, and modern vulnerability philosopher says it well, “… we’ve divided the world into 'those who need help' and 'those who offer help.' The truth is we are both." So good, Brené.
Author and preacher, Oswald Chambers takes it to the next level, “The bedrock in Jesus Christ’s kingdom is poverty, not possession. … The knowledge of our own poverty brings us on to the moral frontier where Jesus Christ works.” That’s where we want to be, right? The adventurous life on the frontier where Jesus works. What poverty are you unaware of in your life? Do you have self-blindness? What’s keeping you from loving your neighbor as you yourself are loved?
Today’s step: Watch the second part of Bobby and Phyllis’ story, then search your heart and past for broken experiences and relationships. Take the first step to allow God to use this brokenness to heal others.
About this Plan
What if we don’t have to travel far to get close to people who are distant from God? What if Christians were the best neighbors? Would your street change? Would heaven be fuller? A long time ago, a religious leader asked...
We would like to thank Life.Church for providing this plan. For more information, please visit: www.life.church