EVERYONE IN JUDEA AND ALL THE PEOPLE OF JERUSALEM
with Rev. Rachel
5 EVERYONE IN JUDEA AND ALL THE PEOPLE OF JERUSALEM Mark 1
Each time Mark (the evangelist) introduces me to John (the Baptist), I catch a bad case of the squirms.
The rub is this: John is “all in”. And when I behold the beauty of someone who wages all on what matters, I take a bath in the lukewarm waters of my discipleship. I do not like how it feels.
The Baptizer is alive. He is wide-awake. He is the kind of enthused that makes some people on some days want to reach out and seize what is his for their own journey.
Most of us, deep down, know that setting out to be more like an admired other bears negligible fruit. We therefore grapple with an alternative. What is there to do with the fact that I feel insufficient in the light of John’s ministry? What can we do to make gains in holiness of heart and life?
Methodists have long talked about grace…of who we become and how we do differently as a response to that grace. John Wesley instilled this notion into our branch of the Judeo-Christian family tree.
Grace comes first. Anything and everything else follows. Flip that on any one of our longings to be more like_____ (your blank to fill). Maybe all that we can do, or what we need to do, is to give ourselves to various times and a places, trusting that we will want to respond to the grace that surfaces.
Days like this one give me reason to believe in that route. Today was Nutzy Funn Run, pictured above. We were Team Boulevard; which is to say, a wild array of personality and passion. A 5k race benefitting United Methodist Family Services did this spirit good.
Maxwell in the stroller, Sherry laughing about that hill with no arms to help, Alex running twice as fast as me, Aaron sharing that he too had an afternoon of writing ahead of him…something about it was grace. It made me want to grow an inch taller into God’s design.
As for this case of the squirms: I’m calling it fuel. May John continue to discomfort me all the way to where the grace is. And may our faithfulness increase one response at a time.