|sorry, i couldn't resist.|
yes, i know, you're wondering how being real could be a facade. believe me, it was news to me as well. it seems that honesty has become this upcoming generation's preference to holiness. while both are pure and good, they can also be taken to an ultimate extreme. i have been a sucker for this. my desire to live hardcore. "because you're not hardcore, unless you live hardcore." but if that's all talk, how am i a follower of Christ? it seems i've found a new comfort zone that tells me i can get away with only talking like i know God, talking like i've experienced God, thinking about God, even telling others about God.
God has been revealing to me (because i'm so dense) that i can't be Christlike unless i feed the hungry. heal the sick. give to the needy. serve others.
i never give money to homeless people. heck, when they ask if i have any change, i outright lie to them. i don't even look them in the eye.
someone asked me for a quarter once. i gave him one. i started to feel good about myself, giving myself a little pat on the back, and a little Jesus star beside my name. i was downtown Hamilton. then i needed to make a phonecall. i realized that i had given this guy my only quarter - my ticket home. thoughts overwhelmed my mind. i got bitter. i cussed, i swore, i punched the payphone. i resentfully bought a $20 phone card. one i would never use more than once. this little punk inconvenienced me, and ruined my day with one simple request. i didn't have to say yes. i told myself that was the last time i would give away cash. it was also the first time.
i read a passage of scripture that has Jesus saying,
"Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."
if a man asks you for money, give him money. look him in the eye, and acknowledge him as a person. servanthood is not a gifting, or a calling. it applies to anyone who is in Christ.
i have to admit, this is a hard message. i will have to struggle to live up to it. everything within me burns to want to be Christlike but avoid my responsibility to serve others.