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Monday, July 7, 2008

Reaching out

Thursday night I was at my parents home making dinner. My parents were both gone so I was with all of the kids. I was kind of like their nanny even though two of them belonged to me. 2 babies, Joe the 5 year old, Alicia the 8 year old and my Alivia who will be 7 next week.



The girls came in to ask if they could go to the neighbor's home and visit Mr. Kyle. I said "no". So Alivia, with her little persuasive self said, "Mom, Mr. Kyle is a Christian so it will be okay. If he wasn't a Christian then I wouldn't even want to play over there."



My answer was still "no" even though Mr. Kyle is the nicest guy. Plus I knew they'd just bug Mr. Kyle to no end.



As I was finishing preparing the burritos, I was thinking of what Alivia had said. How often as adults do we do this? Aren't we just so safe if everyone around us believes like we do? It's much easier to go through life surrounded by those who know how we already feel about Jesus. When we are around people that love Jesus too then we don't seem to be watched as closely. Our margin for error seems to have a little more leniency to it.



AT&T has an ad we've all seen asking us "Who's in Your Circle?"
Just think of who would've missed out on experiencing Jesus if He would've have never reached beyond His circle. What if He had been satisfied at just reaching the disciples and not

~the woman at the well
~the woman of sin who washed His feet with her tears, perfume & kisses
~the woman who touched His clothes in faith of healing
~the adulterous woman about to get stoned to death
~the mother of the demon possessed little girl
~Zacchaeus...

Luke 19:1-9 (NLT)


Jesus entered Jericho and made his way through the town. There was a man there named Zacchaeus. He was the chief tax collector in the region, and he had become very rich. He tried to get a look at Jesus, but he was too short to see over the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree beside the road, for Jesus was going to pass that way.
When Jesus came by, he looked up at Zacchaeus and called him by name. “Zacchaeus!” he said. “Quick, come down! I must be a guest in your home today.”
Zacchaeus quickly climbed down and took Jesus to his house in great excitement and joy. But the people were displeased. “He has gone to be the guest of a notorious sinner,” they grumbled.
Meanwhile, Zacchaeus stood before the Lord and said, “I will give half my wealth to the poor, Lord, and if I have cheated people on their taxes, I will give them back four times as much!”
Jesus responded, “Salvation has come to this home today, for this man has shown himself to be a true son of Abraham.






If Jesus wouldn't have reached out to that "notorious sinner" that day we wouldn't be spending eternity with him.






I think it is so important to surround ourselves with friends that are strong Christians because that is one way of how we stay focused on Jesus. Women who believe in God and are bold to share their faith is who I have in "my circle", but I also believe we need to reach out to those who have no clue who Jesus is. Don't keep Jesus to yourself. When your path crosses with someone who doesn't know Him, let Him use you to reach them.




Let's make our lives available for Jesus to reach the Zacchaueus' that He brings our way.

~Many Blessings~

Join me tomorrow for YES to GOD Tuesday discussing Chapter 2 of Lysa TerKeurst's book "What Happens When Women Walk in Faith"!

20 comments:

tiggerdaisy said...

Reaching out is EXACTLY what we should be doing! Great post, Lelia!

Can't wait for tomorrow! See ya!

Rebecca

Yolanda said...

Bring on the Zacchaeus!!! For I once was one.

Right on Siesta, right on!

Love ya

Heather@Mommymonk said...

I want my circle to be just as big as Jesus' was!

Amy L Brooke said...

Great insight about the circle! That is very cool.

Very cool about you sponsoring a Compassion child. :-) Where does she live and what is her name?

Naomi said...

AMEN!

HisPrincess said...

You've really challenged me here Lelia. I work with about 20 men, of which two are Christians. One has one foot in both camps at the moment, but the other is committed and wears his heart on his sleeve. I see him get put down and ridiculed for his faith and I'm afraid to speak up. He knows I'm a Christian, the others know I go to church sometimes but don't put me in the same category because I don't talk about it.

I need to talk about it don't I. Thats really really scary.

Shabby Olde Potting Shed said...

My circle. Hmmm...well now isn't that just the truth.* It's kinda like keeping God in the box, or all to ourself. ~~ You just got me to thinking again Lelia-leluh. ;) I'm gonna pray about something you just stirred in my heart.
Meanwhile THANKYOU for what you wrote about my friend Cora. For your prayers!
Now, did yu get my email about your Yes to God Tuesday? Is it too late for me to join in? If I can get that book, I can catch up quick!
Please get back with me. I want to join yall!
Lea
<*)))><

LynnSC said...

What a great insight there... I love it when the Lord teaches me about life through the eyes of my children.

It IS a challenge to move out of our circles... out of our comfort zones. But... that is where God can show up the brightest, when it is something that we can't do unless it is Him doing it through us.

Thanks so much for the challenge. I hope to be joining you girls for the book discussion tomorrow. Can you tell me what the "rules or guidelines" are?? Or at least... how to go about it??
Lynn
lynnpolk@comporium.net

Pamela (MrsJoeB) said...

I took my girls to the water park today and was reading a book on Womens ministry and the message over and over was "reaching out"-teeling our story, telling God'sstory through ours. We are called to do this!!
You, Gene, and your daughter are still in my paryers sweet friend!!

In His Graces~Pamela

Runner Mom said...

You've hit the nail on the head again, my friend. Many thoughts to ponder! Looking forward to tomorrow's Chapter 2.
Love ya,
Susan

Laurie Ann said...

Wonderful insight, Leila. I'm so encouraged and inspired by your post. My circle expanded today as God gave me compassion for someone I have found it hard to have compassion for. May He broaden my circles and cause me to step out of my comfort zone more often!

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

I am thankful for my circle of Christian friends that continues to ripple outward in layers from my little community here in NC. Who can begin to number the saints I've met along the way? I am, indeed, blessed to have them each one, and you are among them my friend.

peace~elaine

Melanie said...

Yes, it is important to have a close circle of Christian friends. However, God did call us to share His love with others and to be a witness for Him. There's no way we can do this effectively if we don't reach out to those that don't believe in our God.

Great post, Lelia!

Jenny said...

That's IT! I am subscribing on bloglines! You speak-a-my-language. That is, my heart language.

THANK YOU for saying what I've been pondering deep in my heart. Now I need to chew on it for a while.

Jenny said...

Oh, and certainly, you may link to my post... :)I'm honored and humbled!

StitchinByTheLake said...

I like the way you think, and the way you make me think. Blessings, marlene

ThreeGirlyGirls said...

I love it!! Amen girl!! I loved your thoughts about the "my circle"...very true!!

"Just Me - NC Beth" said...

Every opportunity I try to say a little something to my customers, if not but "The Good Lord" in conversation. That is my prayer, that God can use me at my workplace and be open about it without hesitation or reservation.

We have been rather slow at work....I mean really slow, so I have been praying earnestly that God will send us customers! Well, we have had a "busy" streek and I will go out to the teller line when no one is there and tell my girls, "Thank you Lord"...being quick to give Him the praise and I tell them I have been praying for this!!

Nancy said...

Great point and a good reminder to all of us each day to reach out to all people as Jesus did.
Thanks,
Nancy

Joyful said...

Excellent post Lelia. I just heard a message last weekend while away on holidays entitled, "Loving the 'Un-people'", and it basically centered around this same idea. The Pastor spoke about loving those we might be tempted to consider as inferior, or culturally or racially different. He said we can't love them safely or with prejudice. We have to offer forgiveness and acceptance to all. He made one statement that really hit deep in me - "What God has cleansed we must never call common."

Thanks for reminding me to reach out to others in His Name and with His love,
Joy