Sometimes we don't get enough
And we are okay
Other times we get enough
And worst still is when enough
Is not enough
Sometimes we don't do our best
And we are okay
Other times we do our best
Worst still is when our best
Is not enough
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
I was going through the story of Easter in the bible just to conect with the reason for the season and I must say I was refreshed. When Christ died, in John 21 we find that Peter who was one of the key disciples had actually returned to fishing. I mean, that was so soon. He should have waited for a week or something. But I love the realness of Peter, he is rational and practical. But the problem with this is, following God needs faith, and faith always beats rationalism and practicality of things. So he had to be transformed to walk in faith more than sight. And the best thing is Jesus didn't give up on him. The bible actually titles this passage; and Jesus reinstates Peter.
The best thing about God is that He calls to use us the way we are. But as we walk with him he transforms us into men and women of faith. So we can never give up on ourselves. We have to believe that God is able to use us the way we are, and better still he is able to transform us into what he has in mind. And in our walk with him, who we are will most times conflict with who God wants us to become.
The guys on the way to Emmaus walked with the risen Jesus without realising who he was. I learnt it is very easy to walk with Christ and miss him. I mean, he was just another guy on the road until he broke bread. And I know many times I have walked with Christ and missed his reality. And as I was reflecting about Easter my prayer has been that God may open my eyes.
When Jesus appeared to the disciples before ascension, he made a statement that transformed me. He said, haven't you understood the scriptures? I was to die and arise again. He then gave them understanding of scriptures as they wait for the Holy Spirit for power. Have you ever struggled with faith? When the word does not make sense? When you can't understand the reality of God? I have been there. And this part of scripture really encouraged me. That indeed it is God himself who increases our faith. It is God himself who gives us understanding of scripture. And so I have been praying that indeed God may open my eyes, increase my faith, give me understanding of scripture and empower me by his spirit.
I just want to know Christ and the glory of his resurrection.
Thursday, April 14, 2011
When Jesus came to earth, he threatened the political class and the religious zealots. Herod actually killed all the boys below the age of two years targeting to kills Jesus while he was a baby. And the religious zealots managed to have him killed as an adult.
Why would the political class get threatened by the birth of a little boy? It’s because the Kingdom of God is concerned with how the affair of nations are run, since the systems in a country and the world at large affect the people of God. And with this I don’t mean Christians, I mean the people. And Jesus is concerned whether people are getting abundant life and justice in everyday life.
The religious zealots were also threatened by Jesus because he brought a higher order that required a change of heart posture and a shift in the prevailing mentality. Though the religious people sought God, they had become so engrossed in doing things for the wrong reasons and had missed the essence of faith in their generation. They catch a woman committing adultery and they are so fast to stone him and they wanted Jesus to be part of that. By the way who was the guy and where was he?? This picture among others shared in the gospel demonstrates what religion is capable of.
Jesus did not come to establish any religion, but rather a lifestyle that points people to his father (God). His miracles were not to enrich himself but to make the lives of other people better. His judgments were not to humiliate and embarrass people, but to expose the mentalities that hindered the people from accessing the Kingdom of God. It’s Jesus who was telling the religious people that thieves, prostitutes and tax collectors are entering the Kingdom before them. This demonstrates that the kingdom of God is beyond a religious structure.
The other day I was just thinking about faith and the question was what is the best faith? I believe the best faith is the one that brings you closest to God, makes you a better person, a more sensible person, a more loving person, a more humanitarian person, a more responsible person, a more ethical person. A person who lives in harmony with nature and that has the best desires for others.
Why do I say the best desires for others? Let us consider what Jesus demonstrated at the cross. When he was carrying the suffering of the whole world and two thieves were there receiving justice, he forgot all that and received the thief who requested for a place in his kingdom. Even at that moment, of the climax for his coming to earth, he still desired the best for a person whose life had produced nothing much but shame and disappointment.
And that is my point. Religion will most likely take you to hell. Have you read Mathew 25 where Jesus says go away you evil doers, I didn’t know yo? The people who actually get chased away in this context are the religious loot. Because they start narrating how they did great wonders in the name of Jesus, and yet he tells them off.
I believe religion is manmade; it is not from God. It produces a people who are self centered, fearful and detached from the realities of life, who would rather scare people about hell than demonstrate the love of heaven. Who sneer at prostitutes and call homosexuals names instead of spreading the good news of the gospel.
And as we talk about the good news, you should ask yourself if your faith produce good news to those in the dark; and not just news about a future event but good news about their life on earth. And when you go back to Mathew 25, those who join at the banquet are those that had good news to strangers, to the homeless, to the naked and such.
My point is, faith is done, lived and felt. And as we seek to find God, we should know that he has a greater agenda than ourselves that connects to all humanity. And so we are called to partner with him to reach out to those oppressed by different systems in the world and to point them to God. And if God is love, then to say we know God is to say we know how to love. And if Love conquers all, then our work is to spread love.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Have you ever found yourself on the wrong and the only thing you do is laugh at yourself? I have, severally. I actually laugh at myself more than any other person does. It is because I appreciate my stupidity once in a while when I get on a stupid mode.
I think something is terribly wrong somewhere. If indeed the word of God is true and if I say that I believe in that word, why then am I stressed up chasing and looking for these things? Didn’t he say they will be added unto us?
Don’t get me wrong, we have to chase after our dreams, and I encourage everyone of us to do so. We have to do these things but not at the expense of the kingdom. The first question we need to ask ourselves is why we are chasing after our dreams.
We have basic needs but life cannot just be about these needs. Life is much more than this. The kingdom of God is not just about going to heaven, it is about the people. That they may have abundant life on earth and that there may be hope and joy.
So, if life is more than our needs and the Kingdom of God is more than going to heaven, we must then understand Mathew 6:33. Seek first the Kingdom of God and it’s righteousness and these things will be added to you. The thing is, when we focus on meeting the needs of other people, which should be the reason for every business or career, and then in essence we are seeking the kingdom. But our careers and our businesses have become just means to serve us and we do not care about people. We have become oppressors of those we say we are serving and that is what is terribly wrong. Does what we do bring hope to the world?
You might say your career does not allow you to oppress people. But look at how you do the things you do. Do you serve faithfully, ethically and in a manner to please God? What would those who work with you say about God as demonstrated by you? And do you get so engrossed in the job that you have no time for God; even to say thank You?
Something is terribly wrong, and I can’t help but laugh. But until we realize seeking the Kingdom is the reason why we exist, we shall be stuck in the rat race, chasing after these things. And let me tell you, when you get hold of these things, I hope they don’t swallow you as they tend to do, and I also hope that they bring more life to you, more hope and more joy. That is the essence of life.
Friday, April 8, 2011
I don't understand how the night Jesus was born could have been a silent night. I don't understand. First of all the government being a government asks her citizens to go back to their home towns for census. It's like being asked to go shags for voting. Joseph and Mary must have been in their late teens, young in marriage and almost due for delivery. I have tried to imagine their circumstance.
I can imagine when the labor pains started and Joseph tried looking for a decent place for delivery. Delivery of God's son. And as he hustled from one inn to another, the places were fully booked. Mary must have wondered what kind of husband she had who cannot anticipate situations. I mean, he should have made earlier arrangements for his expectant, almost due wife. But I imagine he was not that sharp.
I can imagine when he came with the news that every decent place was booked and Mary was here screaming in pain. They must have panicked. I imagine what was going through her mind. How can I be delivering the savior of the world in this situation? She must have felt inadequate. And even as they decided on the cow shed, it was a decision they made out of no choice. Mary must have screamed the loudest and Joseph had no other option but to find a place to let her deliver; and it was in the manger. And who was the midwife? It must have been his not so sharp Joseph.
And then you tell me about a silent night??? Think again. I don't see any silence at all. The birth of the saviour was full of chaos, hard questions, difficult realities and trying circumstances. But in all this, He was born healthy.
And that is how most things born of God get delivered. In situations where you are not understanding the circumstances surrounding you, when the reality is difficult and the situation is not as expected. But if we keep pushing and keep the right heart posture, God will always make it happen for us. I think Mary is on of the most humble of being we read about in the bible. She is delivering the savior of the world and all she can say is .... be it unto me according to your word. And even when the worst came to worse she accepted her circumstances knowing so well that God's word must come to pass. If we lose anything else, let it not be the word we have from the Lord.