Thursday, September 18, 2008

MARK in One Sitting (#2)

I forgot to post last weeks'... for September 8-14

"Teacher," said John, "we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us." "Do not stop him," Jesus said. "No one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, for whoever is not against us is for us. Truly I tell you, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to the Messiah will certainly be rewarded." [Mark 9:38-41 TNIV]
This breaks my heart for two reasons:

1) So often we get this idea that doing things for God is "our" job... that if people don't play by "our" rules and do things "our" way that we somehow have the right to criticize them. So while we take theological potshots at one another, we are destroying our own witness. I may think Reverend Whooper is off of his rocker... I may not like the way that Sister Fake Eyelashes waves around her KJV and her bling-laden hands... and I may disagree with the politics or polity of any male OR female pastor I could name... But who am I (and who are YOU?) to critique and blame? And do I understand how my actions and attitudes can shred the credibility of what I say I believe??

2) The smallest things - "a cup of water" - these will be rewarded. They are noticed by God. And, the total LIFE experience and heart attitude of those who do even more will be judged severely. I believe that. I'm living that... or trying to... I do not want to become someone who builds spiritual machines and monoliths. Lord, deliver me from making myself into any more - or less - than what you have in mind for my future ministry!

Stepping politely off my soapbox...


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