In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus gave his hearers admonishments if they ever found themselves being hit on the cheek… or sued for their overcoat… or forced to walk a mile.
These are significant things, right?
When was the last time anything like this happened to us?
When was the last time these things happened in your Bible study or church event? (If these do happen in your Bible study, I want to join)
Jesus either expected for his hearers to be in these types of situations or…
He was speaking hypothetically…
I don’t remember seeing in the Greek or English or Farsi Jesus saying, “Well, hypothetically speaking…”
Crowds don’t tend to hang around when speakers have a Ph.D in hypothetics.
Nah, Jesus expected his followers to be scattered in the complexities of everyday life. And, he expected that profound formation moments happen there.
So, why do we give the same prescription to everyone seeking to grow in their faith: attend yet another study.
Study is important for the Christian faith. But know-it-alls are awkward to be around, much like our friend who watches a documentary on the Grand Canyon, who can answer all of the trivia about the place… But who has never been there.
Simply understanding and/or explaining the Christian faith is confusing, frustrating, and incomplete. Living into its rhythms, however, allows us to experience the wisdom of the ages and to experience life at its depth.
The Dos Equis “Most Interesting Man” Twitter handle recently tweeted “Dec 11, 1970- he went on a vacation and didn’t know it.”
Perhaps something like that is a sign that the Christian life is taking its shape within us, that we find ourselves enacting the Christian story so intentionally that it is 2nd nature to us.
That type of dynamic may not be practiced and noticed if our lives are enclosed within study after study, Christian bubble after Christian bubble, or sanitized setting after sanitized setting.
Get out there, or better yet, check out all of the opportunities that are already around you.
Stay thirsty, my friends.