Monday, June 06, 2011

time for another change...

Fortunately for me, my life is full of seasons each year. Beyond the four distinct seasons of Michigan, I have seasons of fall high school volleyball, winter rest, spring flowers, summer with my kids, among other seasons that intersect these such as finding chunks of time for Kenya Matters, my kids soccer & other things dear to my heart.

This spring has come and gone with a furry as it didn't arrive until May 8, and it is now starting to slip into summer... With this change, I will soon have time for my kids, my amazing wife, the garden & yard, the honey 'to-do' list, reading a bit, and hopefully writing.

I'm craving a return to writing almost as much as I'm craving a return to family time. As I get older, it seems increasingly important for me to share thoughts of goodness, kindness, justice, and mercy as proclaimed by Jesus. At the same time, I find thoughtful theological voices all too often stay away from the political hot buttons that are inflaming this country at this time.

A case in point, Jesus followers should be advocating for justice and mercy toward the eleven million immigrants who reside in our nation. Yet, various factions of the population believe we should treat them as 'illegal' and secondly as humans. Yet, many of these same factions call themselves 'Christians.' While I don't doubt their sincerity of wanting to follow Jesus, there is no doubt how the biblical text is to be understood when it comes to our treatment of the least, the poor, the marginalized.

Perhaps Jesus followers are not committed to the ways of Jesus, but all too often I believe they are simply misguided. Let's at least this is the case.

2 comments:

Esther said...

If you have time what is your take on this.

http://www.bookfixer.com/sermons/Outlines/1411%20Series%20Outline.pdf

randy buist said...

As for my take on your link, I think it has some merits. The biblical text always has merits & values, but...

This document takes specific texts and tries to create too many rules about how we are to treat our money. It isn't particularly generous toward others.

From the biblical text, when we look at our money, it isn't our money. It's God's money that we are called to care for - to spend and invest wisely and generously.

When we look at the life of Jesus and the ways of the kingdom, we follow a God that was so generous that he gave his life. He gives us unlimited grace and never ending forgiveness.

Yet, we don't seem to want to do the same to our neighbors, to the poor, the widow, the marginalized of our society. We want to be sure nobody dies of hunger, but we don't really want to lose our position of power.

Yet, this is exactly what Jesus disciples of the New Testament did with their lives. It's not that we need to become physically poor. It's that we need to not hold our money in such a way that we think of it as 'ours.'

If our lives belong to God, including our money, then we wouldn't be having discussions of tax rates being too high or how much the people on welfare are costing us. We still believe that since we've 'worked for it', then it is ours. From the biblical perspective, this is simply a wrong perspective, and it flies in the face of the gospel.

Rather than a critique of the document, the above would be my starting place for a biblical understanding of how we are to be generous people.