Following Jesus means sometimes being out of step with the world | CHURCH CORNER

The apostle John recorded one of those prayer times (John 17) in which Jesus noted that his followers would not always fit comfortably into the world around them.

I’m writing on a beautiful afternoon! The sun is bright and warm, the tulips are bright and beautiful and we just finished praying together with people of faith from numerous churches on the Plateau. I even got my laptop back from the shop in time to write this! How blessed we are, though there are still a lot of people facing very hard times all around us. People are still unemployed, struggling with depression, fighting diseases, worrying over children, anxious about financial prospects, frightened by senseless violence…there are so many things gone wrong with the world it should not surprise us that many people are struggling. And it should not surprise us that Christians would come together to pray for each other, to pray for our local leaders, to pray for our emergency service personnel, the first responders to accidents and tragedies, even to pray for our state and national leaders to have wisdom and courage to do what is good, to follow the higher path of integrity and compassion, of justice and mercy. I was reminded (as we stood in that glorious sunshine) of Jesus’ own moments of prayer and how often he prayed that others would receive God’s blessings.

The apostle John recorded one of those prayer times (John 17) in which Jesus noted that his followers would not always fit comfortably into the world around them. Jesus even prayed for his followers then, asking God to protect them and to make them holy even while they were still in this world. Jesus noted that his followers wouldn’t really fit into the world very easily; Jesus’ followers would find themselves out of step with “world” around them in many ways, and Jesus didn’t ask God to change the world so they would “fit in.” He asked only that God preserve them through the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus described them as still being “in the world” even while they no longer “belonged to the world.” And Jesus observed the sad fact that there would be times when being like Jesus would (like Jesus did) draw a hostile response. There would be times when people’s determination to do what they please would conflict with our commitment to honor God in the conduct of our lives.

That’s a very true and very sad reality. But if we are to follow Jesus, to be like Jesus in approving of those things Jesus found to be good, to be like Jesus in opposing those things that Jesus opposed, to pursue a moral and ethical purity because Jesus was moral and ethical in every way, we must at times be out of step with the world around us. That’s usually uncomfortable and sometimes it’s dangerous. Our sophisticated modern (or postmodern if you wish) world doesn’t really seem to approve of public demonstrations of faith. But for a few minutes at least, we gathered to pray for everyone around us, our neighbors, our community, our schools, our leaders here on the Plateau, serving in Olympia, and even in our nation’s capital. And I pray that we continue to learn how to be like Jesus in compassion, in humility, in grace and in love for one another.

 

More in Life

Read the first two books before tackling ‘Banished’

Well, look at you. And you do — ten times a day,… Continue reading

Buckley Kiwanis names Students of the Month

For January, students from White River High School, Glacier Middle School and Carbonado Historical School District were chosen.

Breakfast for the Birds coming Feb. 21

Celebrate the coming of spring with breakfast, fun hats and Ciscoe Morris.

Local students named to WSU honor roll

Students from Black Diamond to Sumner found themselves on WSU’s President’s Honor Roll.

It may take time to sink into but ‘How to Stop Time’ is worth the read

The big hand is on the “12.” And the little hand is,… Continue reading

White River Valley Museum opens “Suffer for Beauty” exhibit

Corsets, bras, and bustles, oh my! The White River Valley Museum is hosting its new event, “Suffer for Beauty,” which is all about the changing ideals of female beauty through the ages. The exhibit runs through June 17.

Library’s art and writing contest returns to Pierce County | Pierce County Library System

Pierce County teens are encouraged to express themselves through writing, painting, drawing and more for the annual Our Own Expressions competition, hosted by the Pierce County Library System.

‘School of Awake’ offers advice to adolescent girls

Twinkle, twinkle. For as long as you can remember, you’ve known how… Continue reading

Mental health first aid training in Enumclaw | The Summit

Friday, January 19 at 7 p.m., Dr. Michelle Bengtson will kick off the mental health-themed weekend by speaking on Hope for Depression: The World’s Greatest Epidemic. Dr. Bengtson is the author of the award winning “Hope Prevails: Insights from a Doctor’s Personal Journey through Depression.”

Print 3-D creations at Pierce County Library System

Bring a ready-to-print file and watch the magic of 3-D printing bring the file to life at Pierce County Library System’s 3-D Print Shop. The free print shop sessions are offered January through March at Pierce County Libraries, giving people the opportunity to use the 3-D printers to create items, get quick design lessons, and learn the 3-D printing process.

The past is the past, a review of ‘Robicheaux’

You don’t want to talk about it. You’ve been through rough times,… Continue reading

What would MLK do? A review on ‘Dear Martin’

What if your entire future was mapped out for you? All you’d… Continue reading