As I read the gospels I am always amazed at how everywhere Jesus went crowds followed Him. People were drawn to Him. I wonder how come people aren’t drawn to His church or to us, His followers today?
Maybe we’re not as much like Jesus as we think we are?
In Luke 7, John the Baptist sends some of his disciples to find out if Jesus really is the Savior. Jesus response is clear, “Go back, and tell John what you have seen and heard: Blind people see again, lame people are walking, those with skin diseases are made clean, deaf people hear again, dead people are brought back to life, and poor people hear the Good News.”
Jesus provided exactly what the people needed. He healed their physical diseases and drove out evil spirits. And He preached the Good News to the poor. Yes, people were attracted to Him because of what He did for them, but I think there were a lot of people who saw past the “stuff” and were drawn to Jesus because of His genuine compassion and concern for them. He loved people! There was something about this Man that caused hope to arise in them.
As Jesus’ followers, I believe we’re called and anointed to love people, meet their needs and bring hope to a hopeless society! In Luke 4:18-19 Jesus says, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Jesus read this in the temple that day and then He went out and did it! I believe we are called to do the same thing. The same Spirit has anointed us to do it. It’s time for us to step out in faith and walk in this anointing.
We need to make an effort to connect with people around us, recognize their needs and trust God to use us to meet those needs! It doesn’t matter where we are. Whenever we’re around people, at the mall, in a medical or professional office, on social media, or in our neighborhoods, we should be asking God how we can connect with someone around us. It may be as simple as being available to listen, being a friend or providing some food or cash. It may be to pray for a sickness or disease to be cured or an evil oppressing spirit to be gone. It could be sharing the hope within us that will bring new life and courage to the discouraged and frustrated people around us.
If we are willing to step out and love people, they will be drawn to us and we can point them to Jesus. We will be ministers of life, truth, mercy and the power of God. And God’s glory will be seen around us!
Let’s step out in faith today, intentionally desiring to connect with people and then as their needs are revealed, to meet them thru the power of God alive in us!