In Acts, God tells the story of how he was moving a guy named Cornelius toward Himself. At the same time however, God had to move Peter from his rigid belief system and religious paradigm in order for Peter to be able to engage Cornelius so that God could save Him. You see, at the same God chose Cornelius he also chose Peter. Cornelius chosen to be saved. Peter chosen to bring the good news.
And interestingly enough, Cornelius was more ready than Peter!
You know where I'm going with all this. What if God is out in the neighborhood and he has Cornelius' all over the place, hearts that He is preparing, fruit ripening... And what about you? Is it possible that God has more work to do on you than on them? Are you stuck in the rigidity of religious life... and what does that look like for us? What are our 'Peter issues'?
Do we think people have to go to our church? Be baptized into our denomination? Follow our churches practices? Go to church at all?
Who are our unclean, impure people? Are they poor? addicts? can't take care of their kids? the "Well, if they'd quit sleepin' around, this wouldn't happen to them" bunch? the "they've been to rehab so many times there's no hope" bunch?
I don't what it is for you or for us, but I do know one thing... we must put up with anything rather than to hinder the gospel of Christ'. (1 Cor. 9:12b)
Remember what Jesus told Peter in his dream, "Do not call anything impure that God has made clean." Does God have to do more to get us ready for them than to get them ready for Him?
I'm just hoping that the church can feel that uncomfortable feeling, have that strange urge and burden, and listen when the Lord moves us from where we are to where we need to be so He can use us to 'save some'.
PS Don't think you're not Peter... just sayin'.