Jesus said, “At a church service, the preacher called people up front, and two of them came up. One of them was an employee at Focus on the Family and the other was a heroin addict. The good Christian prayed aloud to himself, ‘Father in heaven, I praise your name because I have been chosen by You to be holy. I am not a thief, a sinner, an adulterer or a junkie like this man. I pray and read the word daily and I tithe all my net income.’ The addict stood away from the altar, bowed his head and whimpered, ‘God, I’m a screw up—help me, just help me.’ Listen here—the addict left the church with a relationship with God. The churcie didn’t. Because God raises up everyone who lowers himself, and he pushes down everyone who pulls himself up.”
Someone around Jesus reported to him the news about some criminals whom the police beat up. And he responded to this, “Do you think that these criminals were worse than anyone else because they were beat up? On the contrary, if you don’t repent, you will have as bad happen to you and worse. Or what about the drug house that collapsed on those who occupied it—do you think that they were worse people than those who lived around them? Listen to this: unless you repent, you will all be destroyed in the same way.
“Someone had an apple tree in his backyard, and one day, during apple season, she came out back and there were no apples! So she spoke to her landscaper, ‘For three years I’ve been hoping for apples from this tree and I’ve got nothing! It’s useless. Why don’t you dig it out?’ The landscaper replied, ‘Ma’am, if you would just be patient and forgive it this fault this year so I can care for it. By this time next year, if you find no fruit, fine, we will dig it out. But if it gives you apples, then it will be worth it.’”
Luke 18:9-14 and 13:1-9