Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of August 30, 2009
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. we hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
Jesus taught this parable, "What do you think? A
man had two sons; and he went to the first and said,
'Son, go and work in the vineyard today.' And the
son answered, 'I will not'; but afterward he
repented and went. And the father went to the
second and said the same; and he answered, 'I go,
sir,' but did not go. Which of the two did the
will of his father?" They said, "The first."
Jesus said to them, "Truly, I say to you, the tax
collectors and the harlots go into the kingdom of
God before you. For John came to you in the way
of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but
the tax collectors and the harlots believed him;
and even when you saw it, you did not afterward
repent and believe him."
The religious leaders who had been debating with
Jesus were probably very unhappy with this
conversation! While the truth hurts, it also
instructs. Our cherished religions can sometimes
prevent or limit us from experiencing and sharing
God's incredible spiritual generosity and
"God has no religion," said Mahatma Gandhi. Jesus
did not seem to promote any particular religion.
He did however, preach and teach the radical
lifestyle and spiritual revolution of the inclusive
kingdom of God. The religious leaders of his day
overwhelmingly rejected his teachings. Jesus was
pushing their boundaries. His God was too big for
them to fathom in their rigid religion.
This was also the message of John the Baptist, get
ready for this amazing realm of God to come, repent
and turn from your sins, believe and be baptized,
follow Jesus Christ, realize you are not worthy to
even untie his shoes, become a follower (disciple)
The despised, marginalized, outcasts, and common
people heard Jesus gladly. Jesus confronted the
"religious right" of his day with this amazing
truth. Sometimes the rowdy, irreverent,
rambunctious, and rejected sinners are more
spiritually receptive than the rigidly religious
to God's grace and mercy. Many such people become
eager disciples of Jesus and are grateful for being
included and welcomed into the realm of God. God's
family is inclusive and welcoming.
Is this the kind of heaven you want to enter?
Imagine being in heaven full of such companions
for eternity. Imagine being in the realm of God
where people of all sexual orientations love and
care for each other. Imagine living in heaven
with former prostitutes as your neighbors.
Imagine God's delight to see us all living
harmoniously together as the body of Christ.
Imagine both irreverent and reverent people
becoming devoted followers of Jesus Christ.
God, I too, want to experience your grace and
mercy along with the prostitutes and tax
collectors as a devoted follower of Jesus
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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