The mind is a dangerous place to go alone. Once you get there there’s usually nothing to do but think; and for most of us thinking is what gets us in trouble. To make a long story longer, I visited with my mind recently, and we had quite a discussion about being human. Being human is not necessarily a bad thing, but it takes on some interesting twists as it plays out in the world in which we live. I wear a lot of hats including chaplain and pastor. That’s a good thing. I try to follow the examples that Jesus modeled as often as possible. As I read through the Gospels, it often seems to me that Jesus had a tendency to meet people where they were.
You might have heard someone, maybe me, say that God loves us just the way we are, but that he loves us too much to let us stay that way. And therein lies the dilemma. I go into the homes, the assisted living facilities, the work place, the community, ready to meet people where they are, and all too often some very human people, when they find out that I’m a pastor, become saints. The flip side is the normally nice human people who go out of their way to try to shock me with the bad language and inappropriate behavior. Sorry, I’ve heard the ‘b’ words, the ‘s’ word, the ‘f-bomb’ before, and while I try to avoid using them, they usually don’t shock me anymore.
My point here is that all too many good Christian people, not to mention the rest of the world act like they’re saints, while I’m going out ready to talk to sinners. Jesus said that it was the sick that needed a doctor not the well, but when you’re sick and don’t tell the doctor what’s going on she has a tough time knowing what to do to help.
President Obama may prefer to sit down with a bottle of beer for teaching moments; that’s his prerogative; I’m more likely to invite you to have a cup of coffee or a soda, but the important thing is the reaching and teaching moments. There are differences in the way that people see things, and there always will be differences, and that’s a good thing if they become a conversation starter.
And so, to those who want to accuse me of being human: that’s a good thing so bring it on. I may have a little more book knowledge than many, and therefore should know better than to act like a sinful human being, but the fact is that regardless of the knowledge, regardless of the title, I am still a human being, and that supersedes all the books in the world.
So don’t let it surprise you if I act like a human being, and by the way, you can act like one too. !