Don’t you just love a good bargain? Most of us do. Whether it is a garage sale, second-hand store, or the clearance rack at the mall, we all like a good deal. What we don’t often like is getting home and realizing that our good deal wasn’t that good after all. It was an especially bad deal if we didn’t notice the “as is” tag. Most of us are leery of “as is” items.
Some stores call them slightly irregular, sometimes they are called seconds, but whatever you call them, it is simply another way of saying, “These are damaged goods.” And most stores give you fair warning: This item is sold ‘as is.
All you need to do is interact with another human being, and you will notice that earth is the “as is” section of the universe. Everyone we come in contact with is slightly irregular. All of us have flaws, imperfections, and damage. We all want to be normal, but the writers of the Scriptures insist that no one is normal. “There is none righteous, not even one!” (Romans 3:10) Jesus was quite aware that earth was the “as is” section of the universe. Yet, he came looking for us, knowing how flawed we are.
Jesus understood what it was to see people with their “as is” tag. He also understood that it was his mission to serve the flawed, no matter how big the imperfection.
“Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.” 1 John 2:6
“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.” John 14:12
Have you ever wonder if Jesus were here today, how would He minister to this world? Think of all the avenues we have at our disposal to spread the Gospel that were not available to Jesus. We can broadcast the Message to people thousands of miles away in an instant. We can speak to someone via Skype, email,text, cell phone, and a host of other means in the blink of an eye. I am not saying there is anything wrong with using these methods; we should use every means possible to reach people.
But I believe that the one thing we have lost today is relationships. “We may enjoy online relationships using social media sites like Facebook or Twitter, for example, but the difference between these kinds of interactions and interactions with people in the physical world is clearly vast….The problem, however, comes when we find ourselves subtly substituting electronic relationships for physical ones or mistaking our electronic relationships for physical ones.” Psychology Today
Without a doubt Jesus Christ was the Master of relationships. I am not saying Jesus would not use these modern inventions but I believe He would still use face-to-face, personal relationships to share His message.
My father was raised in the small town of Mahaffey, Pennsylvania. As a small child, Dad would take us for a visit to see all our relatives. During those visits, we would always go see the Covered Bridge. [Actual photo] I don’t know why but that bridge fascinated me.
Bridges are constructed for the purpose of bridging gaps. As Christ followers, as are to make every effort to bridge the gaps between races, social cultures, and religious denominations.
Jesus does not discriminate between people on the basis of race, nationality, level of education, or social position. He ignores all social distinctions and accepts all people who come to Him in faith. Col. 3:11
But acceptance is not the norm in our world. People constantly make distinctions between each other on the basis of race, gender, nationality, social standing, wealth and power. But God hates distinctions. Acts 15:9 So tear down the walls that separate us and build bridges.