Jud Wilhite opened his Orange talk with this challenge:

“Go back to the moment where you first truly encountered God. Remember where he’s called you to…remember how much grace, how much mercy he’s shown you… show that to others.”

This thought has stuck with me since last night.

This wasn’t the moment that I prayed to accept Jesus “into my heart” as a child or even when I was baptized as a teenager. The moment I have in mind is one where I truly felt that God was greater than me, that his plan would be worth following into the mountains and valleys of life and that he would be with me through the whole journey.

Part of that journey for many (including me and many who read this blog) is entering the mess of ministry. And yes, if you didn’t know already, ministry can be very messy!

And this is why. Check out some of these quotes from Jud’s talk:

The church is NOT an organization dedicated to making itself larger. The church is an organism dedicated to taking the love of Jesus to the world.

When we do this, it’s messy.

When people are in the mess, people don’t need people to tell them the obvious: you’re in a mess or you got yourself into a mess! What they need is someone who is willing to get messy and help them onto their feet.

Ministry is messy because sin is messy. Grab a mop and help people get to cleaning up.

When you love people where they are, it’s just going to be messy.

He nailed it, huh? Jud didn’t leave it there. Jud reminded us that in that moment where God captured our hearts God also bestowed upon us abundant grace and mercy. That same grace and mercy should propel us to do the same for those around us.

God’s love towards us demands our love for others. And that is going to be messy.

And scary.

And overwhelming.

But the right thing to do.

Jud closed with a challenge: When was the last time you entered into the mess of someone’s life? See opportunities instead of obstacles and enter into someone’s mess.

Wow. I don’t know about you, but I’m gonna be thinking about that one for a while.

 

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