Attracting the Hurting
Attracting the Hurting
Words of Faith 11-5-18
Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2018
Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL
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 As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance  and called out in a loud voice, "Jesus, Master, have pity on us!"
Jesus was on the way toward Jerusalem. He was walking on the border between Samaria and Galilee, between two fractured segments of the culture, when along came ten men who had leprosy. These fellows were the outcasts of both societies but their misery had brought them together.
They did not come and ask who this was traveling along. They knew! They had heard about Jesus. They didn't debate which side of the border Jesus had come from. Such things were not very important. They would have crossed any boundary to find Him. They even crossed the boundary of custom regarding this terrible disease.
Jesus had that way about Him. He attracted hurting people. Jesus was the real deal and people knew it. The church that is on the way to where God is going will also attract hurting people. Why is that? It is the same reason. If you are not on the way somewhere then they won't be attracted. It is as if people can just sort of smell genuine hope, faith and love. These are things you cannot hide.
Paul said it this way when he wrote the Church at Corinth, "But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task?" (2 Cor. 2:14-16)
A church that is living the Kingdom of God will attract those who are being saved, who are in the process of being made whole by God. It is the fragrance of life that draws them.
When the ten arrived there was no need for a sermon. No need for an altar call or even too much dialogue. The fact that Jesus did not immediately reject these lepers was a warm welcome. "Jesus, Master, have pity on us!" The word translated "Master" means Chief or Commander. There was a surrender to Jesus as the Master and commander of their situation.
If you are on your way to where God wants you to be, get ready for some hurting people.
Now there are some churches that are uncomfortable with hurting people. They expect everyone to arrive "fine.” How are you? Fine. Fine, Fine. If you are not fine then you had better learn how to pretend to be fine. But the truth is that a church full of "fine people" is not very attractive to hurting people.
Does the church on the way attract people who are not hurting? I thought and thought about this question. The answer is not very much. The church on the way is not very attractive to people who have it all together, or who have fooled themselves into thinking that they have it all together. They will be very uncomfortable with the church on the way because they don't need to go anywhere!
So what kind of people shall we be? What kind of churches shall we establish and grow? The real church is the church on the way to the destiny God has for it. Such a church will attract some hurting people, and what joy there is in the gathering of those He is making whole.
Lord Jesus, help me to keep in step with You. I want to be on the way with You and the Body of Christ. Help me to be real. Help me to connect with those who are hurting when they are attracted to You. In Jesus' name.