Monday, August 24, 2015


I am a Christian, and there is no reason why I should make anyone, Christian or non-Christian, feel uncomfortable by my presence. This is not to say that it never happens. On the contrary, it happens quite often. But if someone feels uncomfortable by my presence, it should not be because I will to make them feel uncomfortable. It’s because seeing me makes them think of something or Someone else, and that makes them feel uncomfortable.

It hasn’t always been this way. We’re all on the way to Calvary, not just so we can lay down our burdens at the foot of the Cross, but so that we can be hoisted up, humiliated, rejected and finally crucified with Christ. But at the beginning we feel that tremendous, even overwhelming, gladness that our sins have been forgiven, that we want to share that experience with others, even if we have to cram it down their throats by any means, especially by making them feel uncomfortable.

‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me,’ says Jesus (John 14:6), and ‘I am the Light of the world’ (John 8:12). He does not say the first three of us, but of the fourth He does, ‘You are the light of the world’ (Matthew 5:14). His beloved disciple John, in his old age, finally beginning to understand what He means, tells us, ‘he who loves his brother lives in the light’ (1 John 2:10), and ‘he who hates his brother lives in darkness’ (v. 11).

There is something innocuous about followers of Jesus, whether they call themselves Christians or not.
They are harmless.

I am a Christian, and there is no reason why I should make anyone, Christian or non-Christian, feel uncomfortable by my presence. And why should I want to? The words of Jesus found written in the holy gospels can indeed make people, myself included, feel uncomfortable sometimes. Yet we never find His words bullying or aggressive. He never speaks a word to harm anyone. Yes, He warns, He instructs, He calls to repentance, He invites us to turn, away from the outer darkness, to face the inner light.

This is why I can walk anywhere without fear, knowing that no one can harm me, when I harm no one, nor wish anyone ill. Not only those of Christian faiths different from mine, but even those whose faiths are pre-Christian, or post-Christian, I can call ‘brother,’ because Christ, ‘the way and the truth and the life’ and, yes, ‘the Light of the world,’ waits in the souls of all, guiding, guarding, growing stronger, brighter, when I regard them as Christ regards me, worthy, deserving of respect, and love.

No mere sentiment, not an ideal or focus to follow, no. None is to be followed, and faithfully, but Jesus Christ, the God-man who transforms our ‘natural’ man into ‘supernatural’ without forcing us, who calls us into divine sonship and shares Himself with us so intimately, that we no longer can say who or what we are, any more than we can know who or what He is, only that He is all, and we are one. ‘How shall I say where I end, or where you begin?’ Having this comfort, why make others feel uncomfortable?

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