Scripture Reading — Acts 9:26-27
"Go and make disciples of all nations ..." Matthew 28:19 —
You may have heard this anonymous story before, but it's worth retelling:
Bill had wild hair, a T-shirt with holes in it, faded jeans, and no shoes. This was his wardrobe throughout college, where he'd recently become a Christ follower.
One day Bill decided to visit the well-established, "proper" church across the street from his campus. He walked in with his wild hair, jeans, and T-shirt. The church was packed, and the service had already begun as Bill started down the aisle. When Bill realized there were no seats left, he did what any casual college student would do--he sat down on the plush carpet up front. Although Bill's behavior was acceptable at any college Bible study, it had never happened in this church before.
Then, from the rear of the church, an elderly deacon slowly made his way toward Bill, walking with a cane. The church was utterly silent except for the clicking of the man's cane. All eyes focused on him. Finally the gentleman reached Bill. Then the man dropped his cane and, with great difficulty, lowered himself to the floor next to Bill so he wouldn't be alone.
The whole church choked with emotion. When the minister gained control of his voice, he began by saying, "What I'm about to preach, you will never remember. What you have just seen, you will never forget."
Father, give us the courage to do what it takes to welcome someone into your family. Open doors for us today so that we can reach out to others in your name. Amen.