Jesus didn’t save humanity. He saved Zaccheus, who realized he needed more out of his relationships with others than just what he could swindle from them.
Jesus didn’t redeem humanity. He redeemed the criminal hanging beside him who said, “Remember me, when you come into your kingdom.”
Jesus didn’t forgive humanity. He forgave his executers who were casting lots for his clothing.
Jesus didn’t have compassion for humanity. He had compassion for the woman at the well who had had five husbands.
We are so obsessed with our doctrines.
Jesus was obsessed with people.
We spend so much time worrying over our beliefs.
Jesus spent his time worrying over people.
We just love our canons and our stances and our principles.
Jesus just loved people.
“I’m a universalist.”
“I’m a Methodist.”
“I’m a spiritualist.”
“I’m an atheist.”
“I’m a Marxist.”
“I’m a red-letter Christian.”
“I’m a Buddhist.”
“I’m a post-Christian, post-structuralist, empirical agnostic.”
“You are Phillip.”
“You are James.”
“You are Mary.”
“You are Thomas.”
“You are Joanna.”
“You are Peter.”
“You are Salome.”
“You’re a goofball.”
Chill, with your all-important beliefs and labels, and deal with what Jesus cared about: relationships. Our rationality devoid of relationships is always destructive, no matter how well intentioned.
Don’t take a stance on abortion, if you’ve never befriended a single struggling mother.
Don’t try to help the poor, if none has ever told you his hopes and dreams.
Don’t vote on drug policy, if you’ve never met a junkie.
Don’t defeat your political opponent, if you don’t know her life.
This is good news. Living for principles and abstractions is endlessly complex and forever inconclusive. Living for Phillip and Joanna is not. It simplifies everything.
It’s not that you've won a convert. It’s whether she’s actually better off now.
It’s not the person you have sex with. It’s how you treat them before, during, and after.
It’s not the make up of your family. It’s the love between them.
It’s not the kind of church you go to. It’s the kind of church you are.
Cheers and Peace,