In the mid-1970s, divorce filings and final decrees appeared in the Public Records section of our local newspaper. Rev. Bill Flanagan, a pastor at our church, read those names week after week and began to picture people, not statistics. So he created a Divorce Recovery Workshop to offer help and healing in Christ to hurting people during a difficult time. When concerned church members told Bill he was condoning divorce, he softly replied that he was simply extending God’s grace to folks in need.
When Jesus invited Matthew the tax collector to follow Him, he accepted. Matthew then invited Jesus to dinner at his house. After the religious leaders criticized Him for eating with tax collectors and sinners, Jesus said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance” (Matt. 9:12-13). Jesus, the Great Physician, wants to meet each of us at our point of need, offering forgiveness, healing, and hope. What we don’t deserve, He freely gives.
By reaching out to people in need, we can extend to others this grace of God in Christ—guiding them to His healing touch.