Saturday, April 28, 2012

A Snippet from Sunday Morning

You see, suffering is part of Jesus’ mission, part of what Jesus came to do. Read Mt 10.24, “Students are not above their teacher, nor servants above their master. It is enough for students to be like their teacher, and servants like their master.” Do we want to be like Jesus? Following Jesus in his mission means doing what he did. And we believe that he came to suffer--that the only way the world could be made right, the only way we could be brought back home to God, was for Jesus to submit to suffering.

Last week I said that Jesus’ mission was to reconcile the broken world to God. God’s way is not to sweep away the pieces of this world shattered by sin and death. God didn’t leave this world behind and create something new. Nor did God force this world back into the mold of what God hoped for. Jesus didn’t ride a horse, wave a sword, and reconquer the world like a holy Caesar founding a Christian Rome. Instead Jesus became vulnerable; he took our sin, sickness, loneliness, and death upon himself. And by doing so, he planted the seed of God’s kingdom in the soil of our broken world. On Easter morning, he brought forth its first fruits.

Jesus calls us to become like our Master-Teacher. Like Paul, we have to take our part of Jesus’ suffering on the cross-shaped way. Like Paul, we have to demonstrate that God’s grace is made whole in our weakness and suffering. We have to accept the scrapes and bruises--even the suffering and death--that come from working with the pieces of the broken world.

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