One blustery winter day a few years ago Lois and I were purring along in our car. We were listening to Christmas music on our way to do some shopping. It was a few days before Christmas. We were thinking about how good God had been to us. We were in good health. We had eight children who love us. We had fulfilling ministry. So many blessings. Our hearts were full and happy. Things were close but we had all we need and much of what we want.
Passing an area where there were some poor children playing, Lois said, “Turn around and go back. Let’s find a little child who could use some money.”
After some mild objections I turned around and we went back and drove into the dirt road between the modest houses. I rolled the window down and drove slowly looking toward the little groups of children.
Most of them stood back and looked at our slow-moving car suspiciously. Finally one little boy ran out to the car and said, “Hi, can I help you.”
“Yes, I said. I’m looking for a young man that could use an extra twenty dollars for Christmas. Do you know anybody like that?”
“Sure,” he said, “I can.” Grinning, he reached out and took the money.
“Wow, thanks!” He ran toward the house shouting, “Hey mom, dad….”
We drove away.
We weren’t looking for a boy who was talented or gifted or handsome or impressive in any way. We were just looking for a boy who was willing to admit that he could use an extra twenty dollars at Christmastime.
When Jesus came to this sin-poor world He was not looking for sharp people for his team.
He was not looking for funding for His cause.
He was not looking for moral support…
He was looking for some good honest sinners…
He was looking for sinners who knew they were sinners…
The heart of the Christmas story came out once when one of Jesus’ disciples was irritated that Jesus had been rejected by Samaritans. He said, “shall we call down fire out of heaven and consume them?” Jesus answer revealed his heart for the world. He said, “The Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them. (Luke 9:56)
Later in the book of Luke Jesus said to Zacchaeus, “The son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” (Luke 19:10). Jesus came looking for people who were sinners. According to the gospels sinners are sick, lost, wounded, dead, weak and ungodly. That is the kind of people Jesus came looking for at Christmas time.
The God of Eternity is looking to pour out the riches of his salvation to anyone willing to admit his spiritual poverty. He is willing to heal anyone who is willing to admit that he is spiritually wounded. He is seeking to find anyone who is willing to admit he is lost. He is eager to heal those who are broken and sick. He came looking for people who were needy and willing to admit it. These are his favorite kind of people.
Christmas is for good, honest sinners. He people who have not been deceived into believing that they don’t need Jesus. Christmas is for good honest sinners who live in a deep and continual awareness of their need. Christmas is for when Jesus came to show people whose idols have failed them that Jesus is all their hearts ever craved.
It’s Christmas, when Jesus came looking for some good honest sinners. Anyone interested? Who wants to be first to say, “I need you, Jesus.” Jesus is looking for broken people to bless. He is looking for hurting people to help. He is looking for sinners to save. Let him know you qualify.
Kenneth L. Pierpont
Riverfront Character Inn
December 15, 2003