Redemption means to pay the price, to take responsibility, and throughout Scripture we see stories of people whose lives were a picture of redemption that ultimately points to the redemption we have through faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Sometimes we can look through Scripture and see people doing things and wonder, “How did they end up in the Bible?” These guys are messed up. Multiple wives, multiple failures and we forget Scripture is a story of redemption of God taking messed up people and redeeming them for their good and His glory.
This is what He is doing with us today. We think God is looking for good religious people to do some good things. No, He is looking for willing people to step out as a picture of redemption in our family, our church, and our community and through faith in Jesus Christ we can respond.
There are three primary contexts where we can see this picture become a reality and it is our:
We can open up our home, invite people over for dinner, get involved in their life, ask about their marriage, their dreams, their goals; and maybe some are going to push back and say that it is just being nosey! I guess if you started off with, “My name is Michael, tell me about the struggles in your marriage so I can tell the rest of the neighborhood.” That would be weird. But these are people you live next to, children go to the same school, see them when you are walking your dog, and you are taking normal social steps to get involved in the life of the people that live around you to be a picture of redemption.
Our work is another place. I know some will push back and say, “No, not my job!” I would get me fired. I would never do that. I guess if you stood up on your cubicle and started preaching at people you might get fired, but taking the time to get to know the people you work around isn’t going to get you fired.
One of the biggest reasons we started a new church was the thought, “What if everyone in our church committed to going throughout their week / day and made themselves available to be a picture of redemption?” What would that do to our community? It started off with 4 of us, then 10, then 20, and today we have about 75 adults and what if that numbered multiplied and we just made ourselves willing. What would that do for our community, our schools, and our city?
The last one is our hobbies. Our hobbies is where we work out, where we walk our dogs, ride our bikes, where we play, the bars we go to and watch games. Sociologist call it our 3rd place. We live, we work, and we have a 3rd place. Where is your 3rd place? Most of our time, energy, and resources are being spent in one of these 3 places. We didn’t end up there by accident. God gave you the desires you have to relax and play and live and work and he has put you around people to be a picture of redemption
What if you just made a list of people in those areas? You could probably make a list of 20-30 people and you could just start praying for those people. Start getting to know those people. You might be the only picture of redemption in the lives of those people.