Friday, September 23, 2005

taking the Kingdom personally

"From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him. 'You do not want to leave too, do you?' Jesus asked the Twelve. Simon Peter answered him, 'Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.' " - John 6:66-69

This passage is in the context of Jesus feeding the 5,000 and his teaching that he is the Bread of life. He is trying to say something that is really a big idea but some couldn't hear it. This seemed to affect Jesus, it seemed to break his heart a bit. Rejection is not much fun, particulary when you care about people and want them to have life.

I sometimes wish I had stuck to teaching Bible as an academic subject instead of diving into the new paradigm of Jesus' kingdom teaching. Because my entire heart is in that teaching, and when students are disinterested, its hard not to take it personally. And I see them in their religious systems, I see them dying, I see them lost, I seem them on paths of self-indulgence and misery, but I can't get their attention. The Kingdom is a difficult teaching and it messes with our presumed worldviews. I can't get out of the way of the message, I take the Kingdom personally and it hurts to care that others do too.

I observe that when Jesus felt overwhelmed and burdened, he got away to be with the Father. That sounds like a good plan for today.

Lord I am hungry and I have nowhere else to go, you have the words of life.


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