Wednesday, October 10, 2012

'You are the Messiah'

I wrote most of this during church on Sunday as my mind was absorbing thoughts from the sermon, which has stuck with me as I've certainly seen Jesus in Marketplace 29 A.D. this week ...

Jesus didn't want a welcoming parade or a marketing campaign to gain supporters.

That's so different from important people in our society.

Politicians hire staff to maintain their images and market themselves. They collect money and secure votes. They ask you to put signs in your yard and declare them best for their jobs. And usually communities know they're coming.

Musicians need people in the audience who have bought tickets to see them performs. Same goes for athletes. To get people there, bands and teams have people who focus on promoting them, convincing us that spending our money and time on this entertainment is a worthy investment.

Judges walk in the courtroom, prompting everyone to stand, and then rule on the imperfections of ordinary people and sometimes important people.

Even my 2-year-old son announces my arrival when I walk through the door of his preschool classroom.

But ...

Jesus doesn't require any of that.

Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”

They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.”

“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” 

Peter answered, “You are the Messiah.”

Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him.
--Mark 8:27-30

Jesus doesn't hire people to perfect and maintain his image. He doesn't charge admission or announce his arrival. He doesn't drive a large, dark vehicle with tinted windows.

The son of God comes and goes in the way and the time he knows is perfect to do his Father's work. He came as a baby and 33 years later died a brutal death. And he manages to work his way into my life today.

Sometimes he nudges us to proclaim him with our words. Sometimes he chooses other methods. But he always offers eternal life for those who believe in him, love him, and let him into their lives. He gives hope for today to those who ask. He calls us to glorify him with every moment of our lives.

As Jesus changes me, I pray those around me, especially my kids, are changed too. He doesn't want hoopla. He just wants us and our ordinary lives. He wants us to love him with all our heart and soul and mind. And chances are he'll use us along the way to make himself known.

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