And Salmon the father of Boaz by Rahab, and Boaz the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of David the king. – Matthew 1:5-6a
When I was growing I recall hearing my preacher father tell the story of a fellow pastor whom he knew. If I remember the details correctly, both this man and my father were pastoring churches in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan at the time. Anyway, something happened at this other pastor's church that prompted the church to call a special meeting. At that meeting, several people made strong accusations against the pastor. The pastor did not answer the accusations. What he did do was begin to cry. I don't know what happened to the church or the pastor in the end. But this much I remember and that is that this pastor later recounted the events of that meeting to my pastor father. And when it came to his recounting how he broke down and cried he said, "I was crying not because of the things that were being said against me but because of the things that were not being said. That is, for all the charges that were made against me I knew that before God deep down I was and am a far worse man than any of those charges would have suggested."
I don't know about you, but I have yet to run across someone who was not deeply flawed.
As we have been making our way through the book of Hebrews, most recently we have been in chapter 11 of that book. Chapter 11 has been called "The Hall of Faith" because of its 16 named individuals who all, in various acts of faith in the God of the Bible, stepped or acted. Among those 16 is mentioned Rahab. For those familiar with the stories of the Old Testament you will remember that Rahab was the prostitute in Jericho who hid the spies from Israel. This was during the period of the conquest of Canaan under Joshua. And so at the time that Jericho was conquered, Rahab and all of her relatives, due to her helping Israel and by prior arrangement, were spared destruction. Of course who could have imagined, at that time, that Rahab would go on to eventually become the great-grandmother of Israel's greatest king, king David? But such is the case.
So in the genealogy of our Savior's earthly father, Joseph (found in Matthew 1, and quoted at the top of this article), we find a prostitute.
What's my point? It is this: if you are looking for a church with a perfect pastor, you won't find it. If you are looking for a perfect mate, you won't find that person. If you are looking for perfect parents, or perfect grandparents, or perfect children, or perfect missionaries…it doesn't matter. You will never find what you are looking for, in this world, if perfection is what you are seeking. And so, with our eyes fixed on Jesus, we each run the race as well as we can – every one of us being hampered by the sins of our parents, the sins of our youth, and the age in which we live. That is just the way it is.