Ragamuffins Rejoice!

 

Because salvation is by grace through faith, I believe that among the countless number of people standing in front of the throne and in front of the Lamb, dressed in white robes and holding palms in their hands (Revelation 7:9), I shall see the prostitute from the Kit-Kat Ranch in Carson City, Nevada who tearfully told me she could find no other employment to support her two-year-old son. I shall see the woman who had an abortion and is haunted by guilt and remorse but did the best she could faced with grueling alternatives; the business-man besieged with debt who sold his integrity in a series of desperate transactions; the insecure clergtyman addicted to being liked, who never challenged his people from the pulpit and longed for unconditional love; the sexually-abused teen molested by  his father and now selling his body on the street, who, as he falls asleep each night after his last ‘trick,’ whispers to the name of the unknown God he learned about in Sunday school; the deathbed convert who for decades had his cake and ate it, broke every law of God and man, wallowed in lust and raped the earth. 

“But how?” we ask. Then the voice says, “They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” 

There they are. There we are – the multitude who so wanted to be faithful, who at times got defeated, soiled by life, and bested by trials, wearing the bloodied garments of life’s tribulations but through it all clung to the faith. My friends, if this is not good news to you, you have never understood the gospel of grace.

 The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning pp. 32-33

 Steve Sjogren offers three powerful points on this blogpost. I wonder what you think about his reason why people show up late for church?

Mark Hawk wonders if we are really any different from the world.

Larry James on intentional ministry to the poor.

Matt Dabbs blessed my heart!

Tammy Faye Messner passed away a few days ago. She was an outlandish personality … an icon of televangelism (both the good and the bad). But there was just something about her that kept people interested. The movie about her life, The Eyes of Tammy Faye, was fascinating. Jim and Tammy were on television every day. Even if you didn’t watch it, it was easy to feel that we knew this family. I am not sure why, but I’m saddened that she had such a long and hurtful battle with cancer. Her son Jay is every bit the iconic personality that she is, leading the Revolution church first in Atlanta, then in Manhatten. Terry Rush reflects on her passing. There are several tributes online at YouTube (and probably other places), but I liked this one the best.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liz0rft3Mf0]

Thanks for reading!

john

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