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Previous Message From Virtual Church


A man was sitting in a meeting with many people. He knew some of them but not everyone. In his heart, this is what the man heard these people say:

"I found out I was different than just about everyone else."

"I've always been on the outside looking in."

"I was never a part of the group as a child."

"I was always too short."

"I was always too tall."

"I was poor, and I knew it, and others let me know it."

"I was too rich in a place where rich kids never belonged."

"I had a home life that crippled me emotionally."

"I had a home where my parents took advantage of me."

"I had a neighborhood that destroyed me and what I could have become."

"I just found out I had aids and now people don't know me."

"I found out I was gay as a teenager, my family disowned me."

"I found out I was different in all ways."

"I was never accepted by my church or my family."

"I was never loved, my parents pretty much ignored me."

"I was never cared for, my brothers and sisters raised me."

"I was never hugged."

"I was never told I counted."

"I was never told I meant anything to anybody."

"I was always slower than anyone else."

"I found out I was disabled and when I told people they suddenly disowned me."

"I had to accept the fact that from now on...things would never be like they used to be."

I didn't like myself and I've never been able to change…I have always wanted to change who or what I am but couldn't..."

"I was always last."

"I never measured up to anyone else."

"I was always picked last."

"I was always home alone when others were out having fun."

"I was born different and everyone let me know it."

"I was always forgotten."

"I was always left out...feeling odd...never really a part of what was going on around me."

"I was always ruled out for promotions on my job."

"I discovered my life in the past was really wrong and now it's to late."

"I discovered I am not anyone else."

"I have never really belonged to anyone or anything."

"When everyone went left, I went right and it has always been that way."

We could go into any group of people anywhere in the world, and go through this list, and everyone would see himself or herself.

One of the basic human experiences is not being accepted, not feeling included, or feeling that we never measure up.

Not to be accepted is one of the worst experiences in life, and most people have this painful experience…

Young people feel the pain of rejection...they commit suicide...the do drugs...drink alcohol...they destroy themselves and their lives because they want to be loved and accepted.

Middle age people feel the pain of rejection. For them, life can collapse...their dreams can die...all the old ghosts they had put behind them can come back.

Elderly people can feel the pain of rejection. The elderly can be abandoned by their children, left alone, and ignored by all the people around them.

Just about everyone experiences the horrible pain of rejection. When you read the intro, you probably said to yourself "That's me, he's talking about me." Everyone feels different because everyone is different. No one is ever really included. No one is ever really accepted in life. Where is Jesus in all of this? Where is He when we discover we are different, left out, not normal, not welcome, or not at home? Jesus is watching over us.

To be accepted is one of the most wonderful things in the entire is glorious. To live your whole life feeling rejected, isolated, alone, and different...then suddenly to feel the arm of Jesus around you...that is a miracle. Jesus came to accept us into His kingdom and into His world if we want to be part of it.

He embraces you and tells you that you are His. When no one else even seems to recognize you exist, He not only recognizes you…He puts His arm around you or touches your heart. He gently tells you that no matter what you are going through, you are with Him and He is with you.

He surrounds you and enfolds you. He protects the tenderness of your heart, even when you are sick and dying. He puts a cover or shield, over you, and the storms of life don't beat you up quite so bad. He takes you in when no one else seems to care. When you are out on the street and you have lost everything, He takes you in and tells you to be of good cheer.

When you are alive in your body, He welcomes you into His house, into His flock, into His heart of hearts. And when you die, you can move into a beautiful, custom-built mansion in heaven.

You belong to Him. If you are willing, in Jesus' eyes, you are the most beautiful person in the world. The whole ministry and meaning of Jesus' life is that no matter who or what you can measure up in His eyes. For God so loved the world…the people…you…that He gave...

What god did was send His son to you personally so that, when you are the slowest in the race, in His eyes, He makes you the fastest. He is there to cheer you on, and in Jesus' eyes, you are always the winner.

In Jesus' eyes, when you are on the outside looking in, and you are the only one out there, suddenly you find that someone else is out there with you, and it is Jesus. When all the mean things were said to you that left a wound in your life that can never be filled...suddenly you find someone saying kind words to you. Suddenly every kind word that was never said comes at you, and then you realize it is Jesus talking…and the emptiness that could never be filled is over-flowing with His love.

When you were always picked last, or not picked at all, in Jesus' eyes you are picked first, and still are first, and will always be first with Him.

When you thought you were too short, in Jesus' eyes you were just the right height. And He still thinks of you as being just right. Despite what you think of yourself, in His eyes you belong.

When you were thinking you were to tall and just knew everyone was staring at you, Jesus was with you all that time even when you did not know it. In His eyes there is neither short nor tall, because everyone, if they want to be, is just right.

When you thought you were to poor, and when everyone else told you that you were to poor, in Jesus eyes you had the finest clothes, the best shoes, and the best home in the entire world, because Jesus doesn't see us as rich or poor in money. He saw you as rich in love and rich in all the things of God that you own.

When you thought your home life crippled you, you were in Jesus eyes and He was watching over you, as He is still watching over you this minute. Back then He had His hand upon you, and His hand is still on you today. He knows what you have gone through, and He still calls you one of His own.

When you were young, and if the people that raised you took advantage of you, Jesus was with you, He was hurting with you, and He was grieved deeply. Today, He understands and in His eyes today, He is ready to wipe away all those hurts so that in His eyes and your eyes those days never existed.

When the neighborhood you grew up in tried to destroy you, Jesus was there all the time, watching out for you and caring for you. But you were not destroyed because you hear His voice this minute, and even if you don't want to admit it, you know that in His eyes you are loved.

When you found out you had cancer, or aids, or some other dread disease, and everyone abandoned you...Jesus is next to you this instant. He will never leave you or forsake you, no matter what.

When you realized you were gay, and you felt the shame and guilt, and the horrible weight upon you, Jesus was there and is still there with you. He wants you to know that no matter who you are, what you do, or what you have done in the past, if you are willing to accept him, He accepts you, and He loves you. And your sin is washed away. In His eyes you are clean and washed as white as snow.

When you found out you were different in just about every way possible, in Jesus' eyes you fit in perfectly. In fact, you weren't different at all because you were then and are now one of His very own children.

You see, if you accept him, He accepts you and all these ways of being put outside, or feeling different, or feeling ashamed, or feeling guilty, don't exist anymore. When you accept him, everything within you is changed. You are totally different.

When you were never accepted and you were just there by yourself. In Jesus’ eyes, you were accepted. And you belonged totally to him, in fact, you have always totally belonged to him and He wants you to come to him and accept him as your father, your shepherd, your guide, and your savior.

When you were never loved and you were hurting, in Jesus' eyes you were the most precious person on earth. In His eyes you were the most loved person on earth because although you did not realize it at the time, His love was with you and upon you just like it is at this minute. And now that you know, He wants you to belong to Him, and He wants you to accept Him, and He will fill up that empty place in you that is left by the past.

When you were never cared for, and you were ignored, Jesus was not ignoring you. His eyes were on you all the time. Now that those days are fading away, He wants you to know that He cares for you as no other person could ever care, and in His eyes, the days of the past have been replaced. The memories have faded, and in their place, He puts love.

When you were never hugged or shown any affection, Jesus' eyes were looking at you and His arms were around you. And they never left you. When you were afraid and trembling inside He was there all the time…you just didn't know.

When you needed someone to tell you that you counted and everyone just ignored you… in Jesus' eyes you counted for everything. You count so much that Jesus suffered and died on the Cross, just for you. If you accept him, in His eyes you are the most worthy person on earth, you count the most, and you are the apple of His eye,

When you felt you never meant anything to anybody, in Jesus' eyes you meant the whole world to Him. Because if it was not for you, He would not have come to this earth and suffered and died. It does not mean anything that there are other people in the world: you mean so much to him, you are the reason for His being, and doing all that He did. In Jesus' eyes, you are the most precious person in all the earth.

When you found out or realized you were disabled or you couldn't do the things you used to be able to do, Jesus was there with you and in His eyes you were just as good a person as you ever were. Maybe you have slowed down, and changed a lot, but to Jesus you are as good as new.

When it seems to you that things will never be the same as they were before and everything is Jesus' eyes, everything is constant and unchanging and He wants you to understand you are never alone. He wants you to know He is beside you and within you all the time.

Every time you came in last, in Jesus eyes you were first. In His eyes, you were always the winner.

When you believed that you never measured up, Jesus was right there with you and in His eyes you were always just right. In His eyes, you were the best and He does not care who knows it. In His eyes, there is no inferior or superior, just the image of someone who deserves to be loved.

When you were an awkward kid and couldn't run or play as well as other kids…and you were always picked last...and when you got older and were always picked last for jobs, and promotions, and were last in everything else...when all this was happening, in Jesus eyes, you were first. Because He loves you and on His almighty team, you are the strongest, most able, most capable person He can find. In Jesus' eyes, He can see the real you that no one has ever seen. For you, He has a strong, vibrant, exciting eternity waiting where you will always be first.

When you were home alone and others were out having fun, Jesus was there with you all the time. In Jesus' eyes you belong. In His eyes, you are always a part of what’s going on. In fact, if you could see the way He sees, you are a key player, a key person in His plans here on earth.

When you were born different and everyone knew it, Jesus was there with you when you were born. He has walked with you ever since that day. He knows how you feel because He was rejected and despised by people. In Jesus' eyes, you have never been different. He made you so that others could see Him in you. It was the only way He could make others understand. He decided that you were the person He would use. In His eyes, you were never different because when it came to you, He never looked at other people first. He always saw you first.

When you were always forgotten by people, Jesus was keeping you under His wing, and He has never forgotten you. In Jesus' eyes you have always been noticed, cared for, and loved. He has remembered you every day since you were born, and He has been building a house for you. That is how much He remembers you.

When you were always being ruled out on your job, in Jesus' eyes He was counting you in because in His eyes, He has some very heavy responsibilities for you. For Jesus, you are going to be a messenger...carrying a message to others about how much He cares about them.

When you were a kid and then even later in life when you were always left out, always feeling odd, never really a part of what was going on around you, Jesus knew about that. In Jesus' eyes, you were the main part of the program. Although you did not see it, He was working through you, to prepare people for hearing His word. It was all made possible because you were there and He picked you out because He knew you were the best one for the job.

When you discovered your life in the past was wrong and you still carry the guilt about your past, Jesus was there that day and is with you today. It is because Jesus had His eyes on you that you came to see yourself and your life as wrong. However, it is not to late, because in Jesus eyes, if you accept him, He forgets all about your past life, every wrong thing is washed away, every bad thing is gone. When you accept him, in Jesus eyes you are clean, and bright as the sun. When you accept him, in Jesus' eyes you are not guilty of anything.

When you discovered you were not normal like everyone else, Jesus was there that day. In Jesus' eyes, you are the most normal person He has ever seen. In Jesus' eyes, most of the people that come to him are like you. Most of the people are different and don't fit in. That is why He came to earth so you would always know you have a place in His home, and in His heart. That is why He has built a mansion for you in the sky.

You can have the love of Christ, the love of God, the very essence of God living within you this moment if you turn away from the hurt and pain and turn toward Him. Accept him. Trust him; give all you are to Him. He will be yours forever and ever.



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Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked (RSV) are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Copyright © 1952 [2nd edition, 1971] by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Shepherd's Care Ministries author and webmaster, Rev. Patrick Kelly, is affiliated through ministerial ordination with Church of God Ministries, Anderson IN 46018