Luke 7:35 ESV
Now when the Pharisee who had invited [Jesus] saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.”
As we read through this scripture, it’s easy to spot the Pharisee’s hypocrisy and judgmental attitude. But if we’re honest, most of us have probably had an internal struggle at some point about bringing certain people who might be far from God around our “church” friends. And how many times have those of us who are parents cringed at the idea of our children hanging out with kids who might have a bad influence on them?
It got me thinking about where God’s heart is in these situations. When we pray for opportunities to bring people to Christ, we should be prepared to fully accept and love them just as they are — well before any repentance or transformation takes place. When we pray for our children, maybe our focus should be less on them finding the right friends and more on them having the strength of character to influence others who might be heading down the wrong path.
One of Jesus’s top priorities on earth was being there for people who needed Him the most. Doesn’t it make sense that, as His disciples, our hearts should be in the exact same place?