DayBreaks for 05/24/12 – Meeting Jesus At the Door
As a pastor, one of the things that one traditionally does is to stand at the doorway and greet members of the congregation as they enter and leave. It is something that I always loved to do because I loved the people and delighted in seeing them and being with them again each Sunday. Most of the time the conversation was light and pleasant – but there were moments when it was deep and touched on areas of pain in their lives. What a privilege to be entrusted with the details of the lives of others!
Of course, part of the welcoming conversation was to encourage people, especially guests, to come back again. I would welcome them, and after services as they left, I’d ask if they had any questions about what we believed and practiced. Nothing challenging – that much is for sure.
Episcopal priest and author Barbara Brown Taylor wrote, “If Jesus were in charge of an average congregation I figure there would be about four people left there on Sunday mornings, and chances are those four would be fooling themselves. Jesus would greet newcomers by saying, “Are you absolutely sure you want to follow this way of life? It will take everything you have. It has to come before everything else that matters to you. Plenty of people have launched out on it without counting the cost, and as you can see they are not here anymore. The other thing is, if you succeed, if you really follow me, it will probably get you killed. Why don’t you go home and think it over? I would hate for you to get in over your head.'” – Barbara Brown Taylor, Bread of Angels, p. 47
Many Christians and many churches have “dummed down” the demands of Christ. Christ never did. Christ never will. He will challenge us with his words to live in different ways than the world around us, and to suffer, carrying our cross daily. I don’t know what that will mean for me (let alone for you), but of one thing I am certain: Christ will issue us a challenge that will blow us away.
PRAYER: Father, forgive me for the times I’ve not put your bold challenges in front of others and for the times I’ve failed to live up to them myself! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
I Am 2 is now engaged in a project to provide temporary shelter, food, water and adult care to 37 orphans in Migori, Kenya. We are trying to raise up an army of compassionate people who will each contribute whatever they can – even $5-10 each, to help us provide care for these children until our partner in the project, BrightPoint for Children, can secure sponsorships for these 37 kids. If you want to contribute, follow this link and scroll down to find the “Donate” button: Help the 37 Migori Orphans
Thank you! Your donations are tax deductible for 2012. If you prefer to send a check rather than give through PayPal, write it and mail it to: I Am 2 Partners, Inc., c/o 3678 Creekstone Drive, Norcross, GA 30092.
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