Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Who Is Jesus in This Story?

I was a little blown away by a simple sentence expressed at church on Sunday...so I freely admit that I am borrowing from Mike Murphy!

We all know the familiar passage in Mathew 25, but here it is in The Message: "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what's coming to you in this kingdom. It's been ready for you since the world's foundations. And here's why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.'

"Then those sheep are going to say, 'Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?' Then the King will say, 'I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me - you did it to me.'

In our very comfortable world, we who are wealthy (and yes, we are all wealthy in the world's standards), we like to "do good" for our hurting world. Maybe it's donating money, maybe it's making sandwiches and taking them downtown. Maybe it's serving dinners to poor inner-city kids. After our service, we pat our selves on the back and say, "Wow.. that felt so good to serve them." And in our minds we are thinking, "Jesus would be happy with me. I was being Christ to them!"

But, look closely at the story again...who is Jesus in the story? It is not the one who served or gave or visited. It is the one who is sick, who is in prison, who is in need. It's NOT US.

We miss out on truly being blessed when we think we are Christ....instead of looking at our service as an opportunity to encounter Christ. No longer is it about what I can teach them...it is about what they are going to teach me.

Last week, Jill Briscoe preached and there is one thing I can't seem to shake...we need to make ourselves lower, lower, lower. This life is not about elevating our status, our position, our reputation...it should be about making ourselves lower, serving more, seeking less attention.

I pray that I would enter a season of my life where I would be lower and serve more; that I would always put others first and myself last; and that I would meet Jesus in the least likely places.

1 comment:

Brooke said...

Such great Truth in this post, Traci. We listened to Jill's sermon from last week at home this weekend (boys were both sick), and it was so convicting, and overflowing with words from the Holy Spirit. Loved it, and loved this point you made here.