Affection For God’s Motley Crew



When I was in college, I looked down on pretty much everyone who wasn’t like me.

As an art major, I disdained business majors, because they were so uncreative all they could do was crunch numbers (I sure love them now though, especially when it comes to me getting a paycheck).? I looked askance at all other majors actually.? I even looked down on other art majors.? I was a painting major, so I sneered at pottery majors, who weren’t creative enough to paint, so they made pots out of mud in the basement of the art building.? Sculpture majors were a rung up the ladder, like a caterpillar might be above a garden slug.? Yep, I was disgustingly arrogant.

Then Jesus rescued me.

Jesus puts unlikely characters together.? He joins us to people we’d never choose for friends.? I’m sure lots of those in our church wouldn’t have chosen to live their life with the likes of me, as likable as I fancy myself to be.? But Jesus gives believers his own affection for each other.

For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus (PHP 1.8).

In the church artists love businessmen.? Athletes love computer geeks.? Geeks love hunters.? Hunters love musicians.

This kind of tender care for others is supernatural.? It’s not the natural affection of friends or lovers but the very affection of Jesus Christ for his blood-bought people.

Let’s pray for this kind of love for our brothers and sisters.? Before you go to the Sunday meeting or care group, ask Jesus to give you his own affection for the saints.? Before you meet with that brother who offended you, ask Jesus to fill your heart with tender concern for him.? Before you get together with that sister who can’t seem to overcome her sin remember you’re about to meet with someone Jesus yearns for.

Ask Jesus to give you his own deep affection for that motley crew known as your church.

photo by tgrt


  • Ron Reffett says:

    Hey there Mark,
    Great stuff today! I’m always amazed at how God works, never like I envision it…that’s cause’ He’s God and I’m not! God has worked in some amazing ways relationally in my life through the years, people that I said I would never have anything to do with are now some of my closest friends. And we attend church together week after week, The Lord is amazing in how He takes broken, screwed up messes and brings glory to Himself!
    Ron Reffett

  • Sandy says:

    Thank you I needed this today! I need to look at people through God’s eyes not my own.

  • Greg Dutcher says:


    Thanks for the post. One of my favorite quotes on the church…

    There is no way of belonging to Jesus Christ except by belonging gladly and irrevocably to the glorious ragbag of saints and fat-heads who make up the one, holy and universal church! ? Bishop Geoffrey Paul

  • Steve says:

    Thank you, Mark. So true.

    John 13:35 ESV
    “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

  • Hey Ron,

    Isn’t it amazing that God can actually gain glory for himself by causing us “messes” to love one another and build our lives together. Thanks for this thought!

    Hi Sandy,

    Great way of putting it – seeing others through God’s eyes. Thanks!


    Great quote! “Ragbag of saints and fat-heads” – hilarious. Much better than motley crew!


    Perfect Scripture to go along with the post. Thanks.

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