of flannel boards and a possible gunshot in the back

In Uncategorized on September 2, 2009 at 12:26 pm

Jesus blows my mind. Sometimes when I think about what he said while on earth I am amazed at how many people have chosen to follow him. I think it speaks to the power of love and grace that God uses to transform us into people we could not otherwise be…but I think it also speaks to the deception or perhaps ignorance many people have about what it means to be a Christian. I recently heard a pastor speak who said a lot of things that made my heart unsettled. I was most struck by his message about how in the end Jesus will give us all victory and we will all overcome and have great lives. Perhaps he meant something different than what came across to me. I’m not sure. As I stood there though, looking out over a bunch of wonderful people who love God, I had to wonder whether they were being led astray.

Following Jesus does lead us into freedom to be in loving and life giving relationships. It gives us the freedom to begin eternal life here and now. It does not mean that everything will go well for us and we will be “blessed” with the world’s possessions and that there will be Christian prayer once again in schools. As I stood in the church I was reminded of the radical Jesus I know and try to serve. A man/God who told us “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.” Luke 9:23…this is the same Jesus who promises that Christians will be persecuted and hated (Luke 21).

When we choose to follow Jesus, we choose to walk the same path…a path that may very well get us killed. Perhaps it will be at the hands of Israellis or Palestinians as we go between them to be witnesses for Jesus’ love and call to nonviolence. Perhaps it will be at the hands of the Russian maffia for being a witness of Jesus by standing up against sex trafficking and interrupting the “normal flow” of the sex industry. Perhaps it will come when we take the bullet that was intended for a doctor who performs abortions. Perhaps it will be when we are at the border sharing communion with our Latino brothers and sisters in Christ.  Who knows? All I know is that the real Jesus would have probably scared the living hell out of me in Sunday school. Jesus’ domain is not the stuff of flannel boards…but instead of a radical love that never fails, even unto death.

  1. great stuff

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