Friday, April 7, 2017

The Unexpected

Those who knew Jesus as a companion on the road surely came to realize He was an unpredictable rabbi.  He did not live with disregard for religious laws and traditions, but neither did He let them rule  His life or keep Him from doing what He knew to be the will of the Father.  Neither was He concerned about being on the good side of the power brokers who could make life easier for Him.  The outcasts, the forgotten, and those for whom no one cared were the welcomed ones.  And then, just when it seems He would turn no one away, there is that story in Luke about the three would-be disciples who talked a good game, but had other things in their lives that were really more important.  These He turned away as unfit for the Kingdom.
If we fall too much in love with the Jesus of our expectations, we are likely to be disappointed.  He is just not someone who concerns Himself with pleasing others, not even folks like you and me.  When He walked that road from the Mt. of Transfiguration to the hill called Calvary, He only had one thing in mind and that was being obedient to what He knew was the will of His Father who sent Him.  Anyone who had any other plans and purposes for the journey was not going to find it to their liking.  He was going to the cross.  A cross is not really a desired destination for most of us.
Yet, it is exactly the place where He is taking those of us who set out to follow Him.  If we have not yet learned it will not be an easy journey, the lesson is soon to come.  The cross speaks volumes about the sacrificial life, the life based obedience to God, and putting self aside for the sake of others.  It is not the way most folks in our ego centered culture are choosing to live.  Choosing the way of the cross over the common way of culture is the way chosen only by those who have their mind and heart set on going after God.

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