GO • LOVE • LIVE Monthly
The First Monday of the month we send out a Devotional written by a staff member, leader or a key volunteer. This months devotional is below.
Love the Marginalized
In what seems like a lifetime ago, I was a leader at a summer camp for a bunch of teenagers, and had no idea that my role would expand to actor… The dynamic, southern fire speaker we had brought in for the week tapped me on the shoulder and said, “Hey, someone told me you could act.” I thought my job was to make students do crazy (and admittedly gross) things all week, but there I was on stage playing the role of “successful business man” and getting a whole new perspective on what it means to be marginalized. In short, my role was to play they guy who “has it all together” and as you might expect, the story unfolds that his best laid plans, ultimately left him unfulfilled, broken, and even marginalized.
The world offers us infinite numbers of ways in which we can define success, achieve goals, and seemingly get ahead. The world says if we do things right, then we can rise above marginalization. What scripture tells us, is that sin and the patterns of this world marginalize us all from experiencing the freedom and power of living in the Kingdom of God. Rich, poor, accepted, outcast… We are all marginalized, and in need of Love. Our first step to loving the marginalized, is realizing that we ourselves were once, and often are marginalized.
20“Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather through the law we become conscious of our sin. 21But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. there is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood - to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished - 26he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.” - Romans 3:20-26 (NIV)
It can be intimidating to acknowledge that there’s nothing we can do to give ourselves freedom and power, but it is freeing when we understand that letting go of control and our own efforts and trusting Jesus invites the freedom and power we’ve been striving for on our own.
• Have you recognized that apart from submitting to Jesus our freedom and power and redemption are marginalized?
• Who do you know that is without the freedom and power that comes with knowing a Savior that removes us from our marginalization?
• What does it look like to love them?
Pray today that God would show you the areas of your life where the world has marginalized you, and ask that His compassion would show you those that are marginalized around you. Ask that God would show you where you are living like the “successful business man” and relying on yourself to fabricate power and freedom.
- Written by:
Blue Ash Community Church Mission:
GO to the missing.
LOVE the marginalized.
LIVE as God’s kids.