Have you found Jesus? I didn’t know he was missing…. is a cool quote from the movie Forest Gump. I’ve been doing some thinking on this.
In some communities, the focus is on the poor and the least of these to a huge extent… in some cases, Jesus is rarely mentioned if at all.
In some communities, the focus is on uber orthodoxy, and its so easy to get wound up in the “right way” that Jesus doesn’t takes a second chair to policy and procedure, or in other cases, He doesn’t get mentioned at all.
In some communities, the focus is on so much scholarship and wisdom, somewhere, somehow Jesus sort of pales in comparison, or current psychology dominates so much of the environment, Jesus doesn’t get mentioned at all.
In some communities, the focus is on sex, hetero or homosexuality to such an extent, that the talk of sex is much more prevalent than Jesus. In some cases, he doesn’t get mentioned at all.
In some communities, the focus is on wealth and personal growth to such an extent, that talk of Jesus pales in comparison.
In some communities, adherence to political ideology is so great, that if a homeless and hungry immigrant happened by, he would be unwelcome, as would Jesus.
In some communities, the fear of sexual stumbling is so great, that folks run from those with minimal clothing and they are unwelcome. Jesus would not get clothes.
In some communities, imprisoning folks and throwing away the key as a penal solution, and not attending to their medical needs as it costs too much is common practice. Jesus would be left alone to suffer in his cell.
In some communities, the injured man along side the road is walked on by, because ministry is too important. Jesus would also be walked on by, but in fairness, folks would pray that Caesar or a Samaritan would come to Jesus rescue.
In some communities, the focus is on abortion to such an extent, that the talk of the unborn is much more prevalent than Jesus. In some cases, he doesn’t get mentioned at all.
The deal is…. Jesus is not missing, Forest is right in that. Yet when Jesus stands at the door and knocks, and the community keeps the door shut and lets other, even things that could be good keep them from opening the door, a serious problem exists. What good can come from a community to upholds Jesus in name, and yet keeps him from entering?
Lest I be a rock thrower, I’ll fess up to botching the above list in its entirety at one time or another. Its very easy to get on what one thinks is the right path, only to end up shutting the door, and not letting Jesus in.
Ecclesiastes 7 presents a lot of wisdom in this, verse 16 pretty much nails it. Do not be overrighteous, neither be overwise—why destroy yourself?
When we get caught up in “good things” to the exception of Christ, we should be asking… Why do we put Jesus outside the door? Why is this “good thing” so important that our savior is not even mentioned?