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Indispensable

Indispensable 

Some people are indispensable members of Christ’s body — they get superabundant honor.

The list goes this way:
1) The feeble
2) The less honored
3) The uncomely  (These  are strength-less or weak).
4) Unbeautified, shapeless and not elegant.

These groups often get kicked to the curb.

Matthew 25:40 
teaches, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”

How?
When and why were these acts of kindness done to the least, and accounted as having been done to Jesus Himself?

With their shoes on our feet, how does it go?

To discover this, let us become one of these weak, indeed we are already more like them than we admit. With their shoes on our feet, how does it go?

a. They have a physical blemish or crooked walk.
b. They have failed a lot at vital issues.
c. They have struggled financially; socially, they lack people-skills. In self-discipline, they fight as if underwater.
d. They have one or more troubling sins;
e. They live in degrees of depression, and they never seem to get to “homeostasis.”

In the 14th to 18th centuries, life was especially tough in Europe. 

This darkened time featured death and the constant threat of it. It was a time of the plague, indefensible and voluminous. Once infected, three days remained in life-expectancy, young or old. 25 to 35% of a town or village disappeared all at once. The work force, in shambles, failed at productivity of foods and vitals. Shysters scoured the neighborhood for opportunities to plunder.

Many adopted hopeless hearts as they mourned the death of sons, daughters, moms and dads. There was a constant hazard of infection. All seemed so helpless, and folks were unsure from where disease would come next. Apprehension isolated friends, family, and social contacts. Suspicion, terrifying fear, and self-absorbed tendencies followed. Blame, superstition, and many “spiritualist” activities were prevalent.

Running from death

Friends, do we also live this way today? Many do — As if running from death itself, precious feeble folk, dishonored and unattractive; they are our mission field.

 “The Greatest thing in the World”

Henry Drummond in his booklet “The Greatest thing in the World” wrote, “Guilelessness is the grace for suspicious people, possession of it is the great secret of influence.” “In an atmosphere of suspicion, men shrivel up, but in that atmosphere, (guilelessness), they expand.”“Love thinketh no evil,” imputes no motive, sees the bright side.” “People who influence us are people who believe in us.” We must believe in others and try to elevate them to trust in our belief in them. “…respect of another is the first restoration of the self-respect a man has lost.”

…may be the first time for many.

What are we saying? To receive a pure interest from an outsider may be the first time for many. Frankly, the efforts of men often fail, but sourced in God’s love, they never fail. Self-seeking cannot participate in God’s love, which throws out the conditions.
heart with God written inside


Christ died for the ‘ungodly’

In closing, William Newell made an emphasis in his commentary on Romans 5. “In due time, Christ died for the ‘ungodly.’” He says, “In reference to the “ungodly,” “If we say, God, indeed has in some special cases justified notoriously, openly, evidently ungodly ones; while his general habit is to justify the godly, (which is what human reason demands), then we at once deny all scripture.”If God justifies on the ground of godliness, you have left out the Blood of Christ — on which ground alone God can deal with sinners.”

Christ Himself took on uncomliness.

Isaiah tells us “He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.” Christ Himself took on our uncomliness.He is also despised and rejected of men; “a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; and we esteemed him not.”

Ye, through his poverty might be rich.

2 Corinthians 8:9 “For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.”

Folks, God has chosen the foolish things to confound the wise. When we love the unlovely, we do it unto Christ, indeed!

 Thank you Jesus! Love Ya
Tom Sliva

Tom Sliva

Born in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, Pastor Sliva went to Bible college in Massachusetts at the Stevens School of the Bible in !982. He and his family moved to Baltimore in1987 to be a part of Greater Grace World Outreach. From there, he served in Prescott, Arizona, and Indianapolis, Ind. Ordained upon his return to Baltimore in 1995, Pastor Sliva was afflicted with brain cysts in the late 90's and stayed at home base until his recovery in 2002. He then assisted with ministries in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh before resettling in Baltimore due to his son's sudden illness and death. Pastor Sliva is a colon cancer survivor. He has been part of the Pastoral Care Team since 2008 and leads the Grief Share group at Greater Grace Church. Read more from Pastor Sliva on his blog Healing at the Cross.
Tom Sliva

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Comments(3)

  1. Reply
    Lesley Roe says

    Ralph brought this to my attention and read this to me a few times!!!!! It has blessed me beyond measure!!!! He made a copy for me and I read it often. I can not tell you how much this means to me and I’m seeing Gods love for me and others now more than ever and in a new, beautiful way!!!! Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful message!!!! In Christ love Lesley and Ralph Roe

    • Reply
      Tom Sliva says

      Lesley, thank you for your kind encouragement to me. ts

  2. Reply
    Elizabeth Hoag says

    P.Tom – I am so grateful for the indispensable beautiful unlovely people you wrote about here. It was ever so life changing for me!!! You brought to life—-in technicolor!!!—the depths of love one can touch—can experience—by simply walking in their shoes for a day—for an hour— 1/2 hr.–you’ll never be the same—————————-It happened to me today that I saw through the tears of a lady of God who was entering an assisted living place for the 1st time. I’d set up her room with all her photos and her personal words of faith encouragement she’d kept. Then a God moment happened. Her tears were also burning on my cheeks as I listened and asked myself: “Lord who is assisting who here in this place?” And the thought “But God” nudged me. Then the caretaker asked her what she liked to do. She replied without hesitation looking dead on at the catetaker—and leaning forward lovingly taking the caretaker’s hands in hers—and smiling with great zeal: “To care for people.” The caretaker was taken aback….silent…then a smile came on her face as she said: “Like me you love people and their uniqueness. People are special. You can help me care for people.” She said: “Yes I want to. That’s who I am. Do you know the Lord?” The caretaker said: “Yes.” This lady of God in her Dementia was completely clear and right on target in her ministering. There is something we can always find if we take the time—in seemingly foolish things.—How beautiful are those moments we spend loving Christ by loving His creations….no matter how unlovely they or their situations may appear. Elizabeth Hoag

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