Monday, August 15, 2011
Can I Get A Witness?
“I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is just, because I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me. If I alone bear witness about myself, my testimony is not deemed true. There is another who bears witness about me, and I know that the testimony that he bears about me is true. You sent to John, and he has borne witness to the truth. Not that the testimony that I receive is from man, but I say these things so that you may be saved. He was a burning and shining lamp, and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light. But the testimony that I have is greater than that of John. For the works that the Father has given me to accomplish, the very works that I am doing, bear witness about me that the Father has sent me. And the Father who sent me has himself borne witness about me. His voice you have never heard, his form you have never seen, and you do not have his word abiding in you, for you do not believe the one whom he has sent. You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life. I do not receive glory from people. But I know that you do not have the love of God within you. I have come in my Father's name, and you do not receive me. If another comes in his own name, you will receive him. How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God? Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father. There is one who accuses you: Moses, on whom you have set your hope. For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote of me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?” John 5:30-47
I come from a long line of story tellers, from people who revel in a good story and a good joke. I also am embedded in a family who are imaginative and creative, who have been known to make up some good "stories" from time to time. When I was a child, my grandpa WalkingStick would tell me some tall tales, wrestling with bears and falling off cliffs. I would ask, in rapt attention, :then what happened?" And he would answer, " then I died!" and we would laugh at the ridiculousness of that and the grandiosity of the story. He called these stories "big windies".
The religious leaders were not believing Jesus and thought this upstart from Galilee had a nerve trying to pawn himself off as the Messiah. They believed he was just telling tall tales, like so many before him. But unlike the so many before him, Jesus lived a life of humility and healing, of compassion and servant hood. He wasn't looking for attention, he was following where God, his father had lead him. He was walking the sacred path, despite all of the challenges and temptations.
Today I want to give thanks to God for sending us love and compassion in Jesus, for sending us a humble self, willing to walk with the people and reach out and touch untouchables. May we all remember to be witnesses to that love by our actions - our service and our compassion, by walking with the people and including all.