Remember that one time when I prayed for God to strengthen my faith and my spirit and my courage, to give me that “holy fire”, to challenge me, to “lead me where my trust is without borders” (doh!) and to give me that hands-in-the-air kind of faith that we all want?
Well I did pray, for all of it.
Kinda just thought all God had to do was pull a Captain Picard and “make it so.”
Guys? How about don’t go singing the Zion deluxe edition of “Oceans” unless you are really asking for it.
So let me tell you where I’m at.
Let’s just jump right to this scene: Jesus’s bloody mangled body on the cross, crowds all around, people gloating, naysayers feeling super righteous, and Jesus’s friends, watching afraid, from a distance.
Jesus–You were supposed to be our king. You were supposed to get rid of these Romans. You are the hope of the world. You are the son of God, we know this! You are the actual Messiah. Come down off the cross. Call on God–your own father!–and just come down looking shiny and clean and strong! Why isn’t he doing it? Is he actually dying? What is happening?
His disciples–scared, worried, you know it. They didn’t know why events were unfolding that seemed completely opposite to Jesus’s end game. But they did know that Jesus changed their lives, and that He made promises, and that He was the son of God. And these were the very simple things they clung to between the time Jesus was arrested to the time He rose from the grave. Full understanding came later if it came at all.
Am I like a person in the crowd? One of those that cheered for Jesus when He rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, poised to become king of the Jews and free the nation of Israel from the Romans–only to be disappointed and hostile when things didn’t turn out that way? Do I really want to believe only when conditions look favorable for me and my family?
Am I like one of the naysayers, doubting His power the whole time, saying “I told you–that Jesus, not worth believing in much less following.”
The biggest hope I dare hope for myself would be to have a disciple’s faith: afraid, trembling, but believing, expecting miracles and trusting in God’s hand in all things, no matter how much I know or do not know.