Here we've got early church copyright issues. This Jesus is ours, you
can't have him. What he says is copyrighted to us, you can't repeat
what he says and expect to get away with it, or get the same result. It
is the start of church bureaucracy with the disciples expecting Jesus to
affirm what they think and stop someone else using his name to expel
Gandhi had a take on this saying that I like your Jesus but not his
followers because Gandhi could sign up to what Jesus said and believed
and envisioned but what he didn't see are very spiritual was the way we
all ran around giving ourselves the monopoly on Jesus. Jesus wasn't,
isn't, a product. Jesus is a way of living. That's all he seemed to be
interested in. The way. The process. the verb.
This isn't Nike or Adidas or Coke or Pepsi being precious with strap
lines and logos that are the only thing that identifies their producs=ts
as being different from others. This is a cause that is trying to give
away what it says and looks like and does in order that it does
something to change society. Clearly Jesus was never going to be a CEO
but his disciples again and again weren't getting the whole idea of
following. They were the adverts themselves and they weren't making the
best job of it. Hmmm....
Anyway, hymns (don't worry about copyright!) or a suggestion how we
might read this passage, or some music that might go along with the
theme that could be played during the service at some point?
"Then he put a little child among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, “Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes not only me but also my Father who sent me.” (Mark 9:36-37)
Easy peasy this week. Stop going on about rewards related to how well
you are doing at being church and remember why you got into this faith
thing in the first place. Sorted.
Well, perhaps, but not quite.
"You're going on about being the greatest and having all the
important seats. That's the wrong conversation," says Jesus. "Look
here's an example of what I am talking about: this child here, this one
is the greatest, and why? Because you all think this child is the least.
In fact can anyone here remember this child's name? Thought not. And
because you think thins child is the least, that makes them the
greatest. Got it?"
No, not really.
"Children are least and I'm asking you to welcome them. Welcome them.
That's the key word: welcome. Not give them a place but give them some
honour, respect, engage with them, turn round those habits you've got
and provide some deep hospitality toward those you think the least. Turn
them into the greatest. That's kingdom values, and not you whispering
behind me about all the glory you think you deserve. You'd think that
now I've just given you the way to welcome me into your faith
communities would have you doing this open armed. Why am I not surprised
children still have to work for their place in the church?"
Be hospitable to the least. Honour them with a deep welcome. Then they shall be the greatest.
you grow in friendship with someone you feel you are getting to know them well you laugh together you know what angers each other you feel you’ve made some kind of kindred friend and then they say something that makes you wonder about all the years you’ve grown to know each other ‘Who do you say I am?”
it is a loaded question one with a ‘right’ answer and you don’t know if you know what it is
every relationship sooner or later gets to that point the introductions come to an end and you have to decide is this going to a relationship where we talk about more than just the weather
and here is Jesus in that same moment with us ‘Who do you say I am?’
Here's a wee starter to set ideas running for Sunday. Please feel free to join the discussion... We could make this a wee regular ting to meet here at the beginning of the week for a blether.
Here's the God we never wanted. But got anyway.
Who do you say I am?
I say you are a disturber and agitator and unsettler of my life. I say you are my guilty conscience. I say you are the one who always has me asking questions. I say you are the one who makes me worry about my lifestyle. I say you are the one who ultimately makes me face my choices. I say you are uncomfortable.
I say you are the God I never wanted but I think I'm glad I got you anyway.
Some Questions: The God we wanted or needed? If you were an alien (some of us feel we are) and you watched the church or your own congregation, what do you think that alien would say about what we thought of Jesus? Name one thing you/we do in Jesus name that names him in the world?