getting deep

March 5, 2010

David Guzik writes that, "In the ancient Greek language, religious is a word that is never used in a positive sense in the New Testament."

I've struggled, this semester, with people around me making Jesus out to be something I don't really think he is. Mainly making him out to be religion - stiff collars and long skirts, conservatism, and homophobia.

I know I don't talk about my faith a lot on here, per se. But that's because I believe that faith lived out is more real than faith talked about. I suppose you could say that I talk about my faith all the time, without talking about it. I talk about it when I write about Beta, when I interview people doing work for the needy, when I write about "what you can do" and when I write about the work that I hope to do. I write it when I write about freedom of expression, and the freedom to be myself. I write about it when I write about giving myself grace in mistakes, and when I write about orphans, and how they weigh on my heart.

I believe that Jesus was a feminist, a human rights activist, an environmentalist and a lover of children. I believe that people looked at him and wondered how any one person could carry around so much love. I believe that He towed the line for people his whole life, in the way He listened to them, gave to them, worked for their good and, ultimately, died to set them free.

That is the Jesus that I follow, and the Jesus that challenges my heart to give. I believe that we miss the mark entirely when we don't love like he did.

You want to talk sin?

Ignoring need is sin.

“We have to agree that women in many cultures have been exploited, being treated like servants in their own home; that children have often been suppressed and squashed, not least in Victorian England in which they were to be ‘seen and not heard’; and that workers have been unjustly treated, being given inadequate wages and working conditions, and an insufficient share in responsible decision-making, not to mention the appalling injustices and barbarities of slavery and the slave trade. We who name Christ’s name need to acknowledge with shame that we ourselves have often acquiesced in the status quo and so helped to perpetuate some forms of human oppression, instead of being in the vanguard of those seeking social change…to whom do women, children and workers chiefly owe their liberation? Is it not to Jesus Christ? It is Jesus Christ who treated women with courtesy and honor in an age in which they were despised. It is Jesus Christ who said ‘Let the children come to me’ in a period of history in which unwanted babies were consigned to the local rubbish dumb (as they are today to the hospital incinerator), or abandoned in the forum for anybody to pick up and rear for slavery or prostitution. And it is Jesus Christ who taught the dignity of manual labor by working himself as a carpenter, washing his disciples’ feet and saying, ‘I am among you as one who serves’” - John Stott

This week, Nick Kristof wrote this article about evangelicals. I was encouraged. 

(photo mine)


Claire said...

Love this. Love the passion in your faith.
I totally agree with your words, but I definitely have a harder time explaining my beliefs(which mirror yours) in the environment in which I work and live. I've found my actions often have spoken much louder than anything that I've ever said... or didn't say.

angela said...

oh Oh OH! mesi so much, se'm. this was very very true and good.

Austin said...

Beautiful message. Beautiful post.

Chuck Wilson said...

That was really encouraging