I saw this blogger shared on facebook and really liked what she said. Thoughts?
That Pesky Jesus
Whether you believe Jesus is the Son
of God or just a character in a book, you have to admit that some of the
things he says are pretty annoying. Jesus wants us to give away our
goods, feed the poor, help the sick, and turn the other cheek when
someone wrongs us.
Boy, Jesus has his nerve,
doesn't he? Where does he get off telling me to do those things? Doesn't
he know that I worked hard for my things, so I deserve them? Doesn't he
know that I'm busy? Doesn't he know that the poor and the sick got that
way because they made bad choices or sinned? Geesh, why should the poor
and sick get a free ride while I work for what I get? And turning the
other cheek? Why, that's enabling a bully to keep bullying, isn't it?
Better I teach him a lesson, so he doesn't hurt me again.
Good points, maybe, or maybe
just self-serving points, but the question is, "How well has that
self-satisfied, think-of-myself-first worldview worked out?" Not too
well, I'd say. The ranks of the homeless, the poor, the sick, and the
hungry grow day by day, and we refuse to see them. We use labels,
abstractions, or statistics to hide hurting individuals. We pat
ourselves on the back when we make a donation to a food bank, and then
we go out for a steak dinner in a restaurant and spend enough to feed
several families. I'm not saying give up all restaurant meals, but I am
saying you should be aware of what that amount of money can do, and
maybe cut back on restaurant dining or take a homeless person to dinner.
My son Grant and I did just
that-- took a homeless man called "Pops" out for a meal at the Red
Lobster. We had befriended him and given him money and things for a
couple of years, so one day we asked him to join us for a meal. We
picked him up on his street corner. He was visibly nervous. We told him
he could order whatever he wanted. He was in shock. No one had told him
that in years and years, he said. He chose his meal and dessert. He was
especially pleased with the dessert because the money he made on the
corner didn't allow for too many treats. He told us stories; we had no
idea how many were true because many were contradictory, but they were
entertaining. We had a delightful time, and we hugged one another when
we dropped him back at his corner. We would have taken him out to eat
again, but he disappeared from his corner, and we had no way to find
him, knowing him only as "Pops."
The point of sharing that story
is that by taking Pops out for a meal and spending time with him, he
became an individual, a possible friend, not a label or abstraction. So,
if each of us adopted a homeless, poor, hungry, or sick person, perhaps
in a short time there would be many fewer people in need. Even though
we might be a little poorer monetarily by spending on others, we will be
richer in spirit. When the day comes that we face death, we won't care
about our money and things; we will wish we had loved more and given
more. So, perhaps we should get started now, thereby having fewer
That pesky Jesus with his
annoying words has given us the keys to a beautiful kingdom--a kingdom
that we can make happen only with our loving, open-handed actions. All
we have to do is pick up the keys and get going. The homeless, the poor,
the sick, and the hungry are waiting for us.
Happy Easter. Blessings to you, your family, and your friends.
How far you go in life depends on your being: tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of both the weak and strong. Because someday in life you would have been one or all of these. GeorgeWashingtonCarver
on Apr. 14, 2012 at 3:27 PM