Monday, May 07, 2012

[why would I ever go there?]

grace: visual edition is an amazing book which combines the writings of Philip Yancey in his book What's so Amazing about Grace with great visuals. Here's one story which will give you a taste of the book and which also ties in with the theme of this blog:
"A prostitute came to me in wretched strait, homeless, sick, unable to buy food for her two-year-old daughter. Through sobs and tears, she told me that she had been renting out her daughter—two years old!—to men interested in kinky sex. She made more renting out her daughter for an hour than she could earn on her own in a night. She had to do it, she said, to support her own drug habit.

I could hardly bear hearing her sordid story. For one thing, it made me legally liable—I'm required to report cases of child abuse. I had no idea what to say to this woman. At last I asked if she had ever thought of going to a church for help.
I will never forget the look of pure, naive shock that crossed her face.

'Church!' she cried. 'why would I ever go there? I was already feeling terrible about myself. They'd just make me feel worse.'"

What struck me about my friend's story is that women much like this prostitute fled toward Jesus, not away from him. The worse a person felt about herself, the more likely she saw Jesus as a refuge. Has the church lost that gift?

Evidently the down-and-out, who flocked to Jesus when he lived on earth, no longer feel welcome among his followers. What has happened?
Yancey, p. 21

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