Friday, February 15, 2013

Scribbles and Scrambles ~ A Thought for the Day...

I don't have anything swirling in my brain that must be shared with you. Don't get me wrong...I have a lot of swirling, it's just that most of it is a jumbled mass of huh!?! so I'm going to spare you. 

I went to Plinky for some prompts. 

Here is the question it posed.

"Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? If so, what is it, and why does it move you?"


Here is my response. 


Words inspire, soothe and challenge me. So much so that I have a coffee table that is covered in my favorite verses. Or when our youngest moved out too soon and our hearts were in turmoil I could only finally find peace after I repainted her room and added the word HOPE to the wall. 


Words move me. My mom has even made comments about me and my word obsession. 


So it should be no surprise that I have favorite quotes that speak me. So many. Good books are highlighted or dogeared where a good quote lies. I've got journals with handwritten quotes. 


And out of all these words in my life the one quote that is foundational to me, the one that helps me focus all my swirling thoughts, all my needs, hopes and fears, toward truth and reality is a simple comment uttered two thousand years ago. 


John 6:68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.


 Like I said. Simple. And not all that profound. These words don't paint a picture or inspire me to do something great like train for a marathon or start a non-profit foundation.  But they are bedrock.

Let me explain. Peter, a simple fisherman had followed Jesus for a couple of years. He'd seen miraculous things and he'd listened to the heart and words of a man who spoke with authority and had claimed to be the son of God. Jesus's words infuriated the religious leaders and didn't always jive with the many religious laws that were preached. But those words must have ignited hope and righteousness within Peter because he left his life to follow Jesus. The things Jesus said carried deep authority and planted themselves into the soil of Peter's heart. 

In this simple statement I see the deeply planted tap root of Peter's faith. Jesus offered/offers healing, love, forgiveness and hope to those who would or will believe Him. He'd miraculously fed thousands from a small basket of food, He'd taught, and He'd healed. People followed Him in droves, but, He knew most just followed for the perks. He made some pretty intense statements before Peter's response. He called people to truly believe what He said, to give up their comfort and follow Him. He asked people to enter into a covenant relationship with Him. To allow Him access to their very beings. And people left, unwilling to sacrifice, unwilling to attach to Him, unwilling to believe. 


Jesus asked His disciples if they would be leaving Him, too. 


Peter responded. 


In my life I've struggled with belief. I've struggled with doubts. I've struggled with the commitment I've made to believe in Jesus. Religion and other "Christians" or Christians have discouraged, crushed, disappointed and infuriated me. Religiousity usually makes me sick versus gives me a desire to worship the God of the Universe. I have been horrified to see a "good Christian" treat another human being with contempt or unkindness. I've been disappointed when a person I respected falls in a too human way. 


But those things, those issues, those disappointments have to do with human failings, not Jesus. And when I look around at all the religions and non-religions and the belief systems I see that the majority are based on working to become a better person. I know I cannot become the person I was created to be without being in covenant with Jesus. I know that His sacrifice for me was personal and I don't want to waste it by rejecting what He did for me. Regardless of what is going on around me, what horror is happening in the world, what religion is doing in His name, I know Jesus. And I know that He is life and He offers life and He speaks life. And I choose life. Where else can I go? Final answer. Only to Jesus.