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by Phil Ware


    Jimmy Roberts turned the phrase during his closing Olympic commentary: “The Blind Spot of Our Joy.” What a powerful image! What a convicting phrase! What a vivid verbal reminder of a profound and convicting truth!

    In of our Christian communities, many of us enjoy the blessings of acceptance, love, affirmation, support, friendship, and encouragement. But look in the fringes of the crowds. Hear the soft cries of the shy and overlooked. Feel the isolation and loneliness of the brokenhearted. Notice the eyes of pain among the present, but invisible hungering to be welcomed and loved.

    Yes, they’ve always been there. In fact, most of us have to admit that we have been there at one time or another. But, “there” is a very tough place to be. Left out in the moment of joy. Not noticed in the excitement of friendship and fellowship. Caught on the outside looking in and longing to be included. Trapped and overlooked in “the blind spot of our joy.”

    Jesus found these left out folks. He validated them. He touched them. He looked into the blind spot of joy and helped those trapped there to find what others had.

Look in the fringes of the crowd and see Jesus among the forgotten and marginalized...
    Look in the fringes of the crowd and see Jesus among the forgotten and marginalized — men and women, rich and poor, powerful and weak, parents and children, young and old. Jesus finds them and touches them with God’s grace. “I came to seek and to save the lost,” he said when he is criticized for associating with Zaccheus the tax collector (Luke 19:10). “I have living water for you,” he says to the woman at the well (John 4:10-15). “Never have I found such faith in all of Israel,” he says to the Centurion (Matthew 8:5-13). “Your faith has made you well, go in peace,” he affirms the woman with the flow of blood (Luke 8:40-48). “I am willing, be clean!” he says as he restores the life of the leper (Mark 1:40-42). “Let the little children come to me,” he says as his disiciples are trying to run off those with little children (Luke 18:6). Over and over again, Jesus reaches out to the folks forgotten, broken, and left out.

    In our moments of joy, let’s throw our heads back and rejoice in the Lord with all of our heart. Let’s give thanks for the overflow of his blessings with exuberance. Let’s enjoy the fellowship of friends in Jesus with our hearts filled to bursting. But, let’s also look on the fringes. Let’s find “the blind spot of our joy” and include those who are lost in it.

    All of us who sit at the table of the Lord — all of us who take the bread and share the wine — make a covenant pledge to be the Lord’s Body, his active presence in the world (1 Corinthians 10:16-17). We commit that our hearts will be moved to find the one lost sheep, the misplaced coin, and every missing child (Luke 15). We commit to rejoice with all who rejoice and weep with all those who weep (Romans 12:15). We commit to bring those who are without invitation to the wedding feast of the Lord (Luke 22:9).

    In our moments of joy, Jesus wants us to remove the blind spot and include the forgotten. Why? Because that’s the heart of Jesus! That’s the will of God! That’s the glory of heaven! Let’s make a commitment to be the kind of person who removes the blind spot and shares his joy with everyone. Let’s eliminate the blindspot of our joy!

      Title: ""
      Author: Phil Ware
      Publication Date: March 18, 2002


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