Luke 22:24 And there arose also a dispute among them as to which one of them was regarded to be greatest.
Jesus is on the verge of being delivered up and murdered for crimes he didn’t commit (well he kinda did, in the sense that he is the Messiah and did claim to be God) and his disciples could only think about power.
How often do we do the same thing today? We are blinded by our own ambitions we lose focus on God and what he is accomplishing in our lives.
This verse has a personal ring to it for me… I want the power to control my own life, my own destiny. It reminds me of Star Wars where after leaving Mos Eisley, Luke is training and he and Ben and Han have a discussion about what controls their destiny. Han remarks that there is no ‘all-powerful force’ controlling him. Sometimes I feel this way. I don’t want an all-powerful force controlling my destiny. I want to be the master of it.
Isn’t essentially the rebellion that occurred in the garden? Adam and Eve wanted to be their own masters? They didn’t want anyone telling them what to do. I’m not berating them, as I have admitted I do this… daily. I struggle and fight with God for control. I want to be the author of my story. I want to make the decisions. There have been times in my life when I have done this… it never works out well.
If it never works out, why do we keep fighting it? Is there an inbred sense of rebellion within me? Can I never escape this feeling that I must control my destiny? I daily feel there is more to my life than what I have, is there something to this feeling? How can I move beyond it?
There is more to my life. There is God and he is so much more than my life. There is the story of his redemption and plan to reunite his creation who has rebelled against him back to himself. I feel inside, I ache with the feeling of adventure because life itself is an adventure, the story of a creator, a God, an all-powerful being who chases to the ends of time and space the creation which he created that has rejected him, kicked him from the throne and placed themselves upon it. In the very fabric of existence is an epic story of adventure and love where God himself will stop at nothing to reclaim his beloved.
Why do I struggle? Because every good adventure has a villain.
And I am he.
Yet, this adventure, this redemption story is epic enough to include space for the villain to be reclaimed. Will I accept my role in this adventure? Will I accept the extended hand of my God who loves me beyond ability to describe?
I hope so.
A little over 12 years ago I married Ronda and this August we had the opportunity to renew our vows on the beach here in Jax. This was a very exciting and enjoyable time for our lives. We felt like we had reached a moment in our married life that we wanted to reaffirm and share with our friends and the world that we are more committed to each other now than we were 12 years ago when we first married. While my wife is a beautiful bride, this is not the bride I want to talk about for a few minutes.
I want to talk about the Beautiful Bride of Christ. I have struggled with this bride and had what may be considered affairs along with polygamy (because I’m married to Ronda and I consider myself to be a part of the Church which makes me a bride to Christ… odd terminology, but it works and it provokes you to thoughts).
I like the Flyleaf song, Beautiful Bride (which is kinda the impetus for this post). This song speaks of how the church stands together and is unified under one purpose, even despite the drastic and wide diversity that exists within it.
I think in many ways it is this diversity that causes the church to have the kind if impact it does. A few years ago I left a church ministry in which I felt wronged. When I left, I became very angry and directed my anger towards the Church. I began to rebel against the institution and idea of the organized church. I became a Christian who despised the Church and all history, whether glorious or not.
Here we are now, I believe the message of Christ cannot be furthered in this world apart from the Bride of Christ. When Christ was here on earth he began what became the Church. Granted, we have made many mistakes. But, we can’t throw out the baby with the bath water. The Church is our rightful place as Christians and it is our duty to love her and fight for her. Often times, we get angry we are ready to give up and take our toys and go home. When it comes to the Church we don’t have that right. If we aren’t a part of the solution we are a part of the problem.
When the Church screws it up, we should not run from her but to her in order to help become the solution.
And you ask ‘so what’?
So what is your response going to be? Are you gonna tear down the Church (and by doing so the Bride that Christ died for) or are you gonna fight for her becoming the solution when she falters?
Which do you think Christ would rather see?