As the Body of Christ, we should seek out the poor, broken and outcast with the intent of embracing them. What is meant by embracing them? Embracing these individuals starts with treating them as human beings who have the same value before the Almighty God as we do. By treating them as humans, whether that is asking them their names or enjoying time to get to know them, several amazing things can happen at the same time: restoration of self worth, participation in a group that is loving and potential opportunities for discipleship are revealed to the local body of Christ. When the local body of Christ reaches out to all members of society with the desire to do more than fill the pews it begins to demonstrate the desire to change society both local and distant (state, national and global). This desire could be expressed by participating in lives through loving them and instructing them in ways to imitate Jesus it fulfills the teachings and commands God passed on through Jesus, the apostles, church fathers and preserved by the presence and work of the Holy Spirit.
What does the world gain from the Body of Christ treating people as valuable? God’s active presence in the world provides a means of understanding humanity’s options including the option to move away from the daily grind of accepting brokenness reinforced by paradigms of indifference. When the local body of Christ intentionally acts with the goal of showing reconciliation and transformation of individuals, families, local and global communities, society is forced to accept the validity of living for something other than the American dream, self-preservation or communal well being. This type of societal response will meet resistance, be scoffed at and be judged by some as abnormal or wrong. But these expressions of desiring to keep the status quo are okay. They are okay because not everyone gets the importance of changing paradigms. This is either because they refuse to change or they need time to let the idea sink into their thought life. Both refusing to change mindsets and needing reflection were present when Jesus was preaching, healing and performing miracles and they will continue to be represented by parts of society until the Second Coming