You Might Make People Angry
I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. And there were many in Israel with leprosy in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian.”
All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.
Jesus pressed hard on the people in his hometown to become as radically welcoming as God was. Jesus intentionally referred to stories in the Old Testament about God's love for people outside of Israel.
As you can tell, there was some real pushback... which is an understatement since they tried to throw him off a cliff!
If you start to act as inclusively as Jesus, it can make people furious. It can threaten their sense of identity because they want to be the 'in' group, they want to have all the answers, they want God for themselves... and by including others who are different, you are upsetting their system, their culture, their religion, and their whole way of seeing the world. But that's what Jesus did. Would you consider being that inclusive today? Pray about who you can bless and include in your life, your church, your friend group, your world.