Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Temporary Attacks

I feel like I haven’t read the Gospel of Matthew in quite a while. This hasn’t been an oversight; in fact, I have skipped over the Gospels entirely out of blatant overconfidence. Somewhere along the line, I convinced myself that there was nothing new for me to gain from them. My head was already so saturated with those “same old stories” that I began to think of them as pass-able. But this morning, one of the many devotionals that get emailed to me had the following translation of Jesus’ words in Matthew 10:25:

"A student doesn't get a better desk than her teacher. A laborer doesn't make more money than his boss. Be content—pleased, even—when you, my students, my harvest hands, get the same treatment I get. If they call me, the Master, 'Dungface,' what can the workers expect?” – The Message

How relatable the Message sometimes is. Don’t we know this feeling well…that much of the Christian life is lived in tension between two impulses: the desire to be liked and respected by the world, and the desire to know God and be like Jesus. In our everyday lives, it becomes so easy to forget that these two impulses cannot thrive together, one must be subdued.

It is quite unfortunate that most of our world has chosen the former option – compromising their faith in the uncompromising Christ. But in this passage, Jesus is urging us to make a better decision. Though hostility and persecution are not enjoyable, they are the last gasps of a dying kingdom – the kingdom of human pride.

Let us not be shaken by temporary attacks on an eternal reign

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