Do not be afraid.
In an effort not to look stupid, I avoid things. I especially avoid things that could broadcast my perceived stupidity publicly. Like writing a blog about Jesus and Mary and being a Catholic mom. Because, you know, the world might start hating me because I’m not smart. My intelligent Christian friends will see how incredibly ignorant I am or worse, how bad a Christian I really am. Other people might start to think I’m one of THOSE people who need religion to console themselves and they’ll think I’m weak and feeble minded. Really, I could list a zillion things that keep me from being a fool for Christ but they all come down to fear.
And I’m pretty sure Christ said, “Do NOT be afraid.” (Emphasis my own.)
A zillion times He said that. (An exaggeration, I actually do not know how many times Jesus actually said it.)
Yesterday I was doing my reading for a study that I am doing called “Courageous Virtue” by Stacy Mitch (it is a really wonderful study by the way) and I read Wisdom 2.
Crack open your Bible to the second chapter of Wisdom. I’ll wait. If you have a Protestant Bible, well, you are missing out. Read the second chapter of Wisdom here.
I had to pick my jaw up off the floor after I read it. Then I headed straight for the World Wide Web to find out when Wisdom was written. Folks, it wasn’t yesterday. It was written about 50 years before the coming of Christ. So, for at least the last 2067 years (give or take a few), the world has been rejecting believers and embracing the “live it up now because we’ll soon be dust” mentality. The culture of death?? Yah, I guess that’s not a new thing.
I almost cried when I read the misguided reasoning, “Let our might be our law of right, for what is weak proves itself to be useless.” (RSV, 2nd Catholic Edition) I can’t help but think of abortion and euthanasia. The exploitation of the poor and the exploitation of women and an amazing list of a zillion other sins that our culture embraces continue in a long train in my mind, torturously reminding me that in our great country the majority rules, even when the majority is horribly wrong and terribly misguided.
And then I stopped being afraid. The people of God of have been insulted forever and they will continue to be mocked and called stupid. We have all been tasked with taking up our crosses and following Christ. He didn’t say to take up our crosses but only if you feel like it, or only when you have the encouragement and support of your peers, or only if you can safely do so.
So here I am, O great big Internet. I love Jesus.
I want to share him with all of the people. I want you to know Him. I want you to love Him. And I want you to share Him too.
If even just one person is stirred to crack open the Word by my post, then Jesus wins. If even just one person turns their mind towards Christ because of some word of mine, then Jesus wins. If even just one person wants to get to know Him better because of some feeble thing I said, then Jesus wins. And the thing is, Jesus wins anyway, so maybe more of us can win with Him and spend eternity basking in the heavenly glow. Yes, our bodies will someday return to dust, but they are joined to a soul that is eternal.
Lord, show me the areas of my life where I am afraid to be a fool for you. Help me live for eternity and not for the acceptance of others. Amen
© Natalie Clevenger 2017
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