The Jesus Who Isn't

Jesus: likable guy.

Kid’s loved him. Folks crushed close just to be near him. He was accused of having too much fun. He was the life of the party. He even brought life back to dead parties. Literally.

He rebelled against the status quo while making peace between us and God, our Great Judge. He called out sin while paying the price for it’s penalty. He enjoyed being among us only to be broken by us.

Jesus: what’s not to like? 

That depends. Do we like the Jesus who is? Or the Jesus who isn’t?

When we don’t like Jesus—most the time—it’s because we’ve got the wrong Jesus. The Jesus who isn’t.

That’s the Jesus who won't do what we want, how we want it, and when we want it.

That’s the Jesus who can't do what we want. It’d be sinful or just plain bad for us.

When Jesus isn't who we think or doesn't do what we want, we tend not to like him.

Who does that reveal more about? Jesus? Or us?

We tend to like the Jesus who isn’t. The Jesus who isn’t real, but is a god of our own creation. The Jesus we’ve fashioned, according to our own image or understanding. If only he’d perform as we like! But, of course, that’s the Jesus who isn’t.

How do we get to know the Jesus who is? Simple: read our Bible, lots, to be challenged and changed; pray, to be empty of self and full of him. Simple, yet not easy. That’s the Jesus who is.

The Rabbit

John Mark sat beside me during Easter Pageant rehearsal today.  Well, that's not terribly accurate.

John Mark wiggled, hollered, jumped, coughed, danced, squealed, laid down, rolled around, questioned, snuggled, played, spun circles & watched - at least a bit - while beside me in the pew during Easter Pageant rehearsal today.

He listened too.  When the crowd repeatedly cried out, "Give us Barabbas!  Give us Barabbas!"  My four year old who looked to be in his own world, looked me in the eye, and succinctly stated, "Yeah, they want the rabbit cuz its Easter time," and just as quickly returned to his above mentioned activities.

The rabbit.

Give us the rabbit.

I didn't correct him.

How could I?

How many times have I - in my own world - heard something other than the actual statement?

How many times have I jumped - at risk of harming others & myself - to the wrong conclusions because I heard my own thoughts & not the correct statements?

Beware the rabbit, My Friends.

It might jump out.

And get you.

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak & slow to become angry.  James 1:19