Wednesday, June 16, 2010


I hate to pat my own back, but one of the songs I wrote has been going through my mind lately and it has become such a prayer for me that I couldn't help but share how much I liked it. It goes:

It is not our goal to remain unstained
like a chalice buffed and shined;
He has filled our cup with abundant love,
let us spill it down our sides

The gist of the idea is this: Too often I feel that we as Christians are pressured to live a kind of "pure" life with no sin, no mistakes, no tarnish. But the easiest way for us to do that is to remove ourselves from people who we don't like.

It's relatively easy to be kind, loving, thoughtful, generous, and peaceful among those who think and look and act like we do; as Jesus said, "If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them." Yet somehow we still imagine that what God wants from us is to be pure and untainted, removed from all temptation of anger and haughtiness and despising and overreaction.

What he asks of us, rather, is to love. And love is messy. We're going to bear the scars of it. We're going to make mistakes in relationship. We're going to hurt people's feelings and hurt our own in inviting people of all sorts to the banquet table with us. We won't come out the other side pristine. We'll be well worn, chipped, cracked, stained, with the marks of Christ.

I'm not stating this out of a place of success or achievement in this area; I am just terrible with lowering my defenses and spending energy on those who don't mutually reciprocate. I say it to myself as a hope and dream as much as a truth of faith.

Love requires that we jump into the thick of people's lives, even and especially those we don't like or love or understand or appreciate, and to treat them as Christ treats them, as God's beloved creations. That's what its all about. That's what Jesus did, that's what he's calling us toward, that's what he's giving us the power to do.

Our lives are like the talents of the parable: At the end of the story we shouldn't be pristinely perfect like the tucked away stash; we should be spent.

No comments:

Post a Comment