Years ago I knew a good mechanic, stubborn but good. He could fix anything. As time went by things changed. The world of mechanics changed, but stubborn old Dwane held on to the good old ways. Never would, never did he yield to the invasion of that foreign metric stuff. After a while there wasn’t much he could fix. Didn’t have the right tools. Wouldn’t give in to the new realities of a global economy.
It’s hard to give in, to surrender, to yield, to change. Doing so makes us feel like what we have been doing is somehow wrong or flawed. And if it is, then shame on us for not doing (or even knowing) what’s right.
How do you think Jesus’ followers felt when he introduced his “new” teaching? They were extremely nervous but actually very courageous. And how about the religious leaders of his day? No way would they even consider his “new” teaching. To do so would bring upon their heads unbelievable and catastrophic shame. No man could endure that. So their cowardly response to Jesus was outright hostility. Eliminate this source of shame.
What new teaching did Jesus bring? Throughout the Gospels we read about Jesus showing people how to pray, how to think and act, and how to relate to others. He taught people how to please God and live in a way that gave him glory. He taught how to act when things don’t go our way. He taught about what we should do after we have sinned. He taught us that we should love our enemies, and that our gifts, talents and possessions are not really ours. This new teaching felt like an invasion. And no wonder, because Jesus was bringing to the church of that day an invasion of heavenly teaching.
In the months to come I will be considering the Gospel teachings (Jesus’ heavenly invasion) in light of another invasion, the technological/data invasion of the 21st century. And I invite you if you are daring enough to seek out, yield to, and stand for Jesus’ new teaching to face, with me, the challenges of the 21st century.
My plan is to start with 100 Ways to Pray. Shoot me a quick email if you feel like it’s the right time for you to risk the adventure of a deeper relationship with Jesus. pastordale