So I'm a christian - What does that mean?
I believe that the creator of the universe came to earth as a human being and lived through all the stuff that any person goes through.
That he suffered an excruciating death in order to set things right between God and humanity.
That he didn't stay dead, but was brought back to life after he was buried.
That because he did all this, if I follow him, I have access to God, and I am free to live without fear of divine punishment. I have the power to change my own life.
Which does not mean i can just do whatever i want to. I 'm supposed to follow his lead. It's part of the deal.
I'm responsible to look out for those who can't look out for themselves.
If I lack compassion, If I ignore the poor, the sick, the imprisoned, I ignore my God.
I'm not allowed the luxury of passing judgment on others, because I will be held to the same standard I hold up.
I have to forgive. That's a deal-breaker.
Being a Christian means accepting a handful of paradoxes, believing the unbelievable, aspiring to the apparently impossible.
I follow Someone who made outrageous statements like:
"Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you."
"He who seeks to save his own life will lose it, but he who loses his life for my sake will save it."
"The one who wishes to be the greatest must become the servant of all"
I convict myself with those words, even as I type them. I have so much, and give so little.
I resent judgmental people, and in doing so, i judge them.
I suck at this. I'm in good company, though. One of the apostles wrote: "When I want to do good, I don't. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway."
But there is hope in all this impossibility. God already knows everything I've done or will do. There is nothing He cannot forgive. I am not defined my my mistakes or my misdeeds.
The smae apostle worte a few sentences later that the Spirit of God empowers us to break out of the old way of doing things.
This is not easy stuff. This is no fairy tale to tuck the little ones into bed by.
What does all this imply?