Luke's kids (Laine's name for our youth group at church) and Luke and I are reading through the gospel of Luke right now. Want to get a cold bucket of reality in your face? Read Luke. When I was in college we loved to sing really touchy, feely songs about Jesus. You are the air I breathe...Hungry...All in All...but what about the Jesus in the gospels? This guy might not even be welcome in our churches! He is crazy. Really, really crazy. Want proof:
- Luke 10:3 Go on your way. See, I am sending you out like lambs into the midst of wolves.
- Luke 9:24 For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it.
- Luke 6:30 Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again.
- Luke 12:15 And he said to them, "Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions."
Put that on a commercial and sell it. In our world where we are told to look out for ourselves, Jesus's words echo down through the millennia urging us to change. Value beggars. I am afraid of beggars. Don't watch out for yourself. Who's going to? Share everything. I hate sharing.
Still want to sing love songs to this Jesus guy? Yes. Yes I do, but not because his words make me feel good. Jesus is fierce, but he is tender to children and the broken and the outsiders. I am overwhelmed by Jesus's fierce love for me.
Sappy love songs won't cut it here. This is fierce love. Tough love. Hard truth. Grace is free, but discipleship will cost you everything.
I am going to value beggars.
I am going to share.
I hate sharing.