Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Where is Everybody?!

Luke 17:17

Then Jesus asked, were not {all} Ten cleansed? Where are the nine?

Have you ever noticed that when there is something being given that can help people in need that you don’t have a problem assembling a crowd? But when that time of disbursement is over you can’t seem to convince those same people to come back for service. It can be frustrating when you help people and they don’t have the decency to come back and at least say, “Thank you.” Sometimes when you help your own people you get more gratitude from outsiders than you do those closest to you.

Could it be a sense of entitlement that we feel we don’t have to come back to say ‘thank you’? Entitlement means a right to benefits specified especially by law or contract. A belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges.

As a child of God, we are entitled to daily bread and everything else is overflow that God is not legally bound to. What about tithing? Don’t ya’ll tell us that if we tithe, God will pour us out a blessing?! Yes that’s true but God doesn’t say what the blessing is, but we know it's tied to what we produce and not just to what he gives.

Jesus reminds the disciples in verse ten as servants of God we ought not look for anything for doing what we are supposed to do anyway. So when God blesses us beyond what he was supposed to do, daily bread, we are supposed to be grateful and return to give him thanks every week on Sunday morning where we fall prostrate at the feet of Jesus but the question is…Where is everybody?

Jesus had healed ten lepers living with disease and separated from a whole life. They came to Jesus and begged him for mercy. Jesus told them to go back to the priest and on their way back to tradition they were cleansed. Then one of them, upon seeing that he was cured turned back, recognizing and thanking and praising God with a loud voice. And he fell prostrate at Jesus' feet, thanking him over and over and he was a Samaritan.

This is what we should be doing every Sunday but where is everybody?! Every Sunday we should be turning back from religion and running to a relationship with Jesus. We should:

1. Turn back after we see what Jesus has done for us. Our first step is to experience God in worship every week. Religion is not the same as relationship. You need an organic encounter with Jesus every week when you turn back from your regular routine.

2. Praising God with a Loud Voice. There shouldn’t be anybody louder than you on Sunday after all that God has done for you that he didn’t have to do. Where is everybody?

3. Thank Jesus over and over. When you think about what Jesus has done you can’t stop thanking Jesus for what He’s done! Where is everybody?!

The only one to come back and say thank you to Jesus was a Samaritan. He was not a Jew who worshipped in the temple. Sometimes the people outside the church are more grateful than the people in the church. What about you? Are you coming back every week to give him praise or just showing up when you need something? Where is everybody?

Dear God,

I thank you for what you’ve done because you didn’t have to do it but you did! I only did what I was supposed to do and if I tell the truth about it, I half way did that! But you blessed me anyway (tears) and for this I give you praise (tears)! Thank you for healing me, for forgiving me, for saving me and providing for me over and over and over and over (shout)! I love you Jesus!


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