Whatcha Gonna Do
The long line of people would quietly come to the front of the church, accept the small piece of bread dipped in the grape juice, raise it to their mouth and keep walking. But then there was one girl. She just held it. She stared at it from every angle. I sat on the side against the wall that morning, and as she and her mom walked past me, toward the back, she just carried it. She couldn’t take her eyes off what was in her hand. It was as if she was thinking, “Hmm, what am I gonna do with this…Jesus.”
The same question is asked of us. We hear sermons, opinions, and music. We cry out to Him when life gets unbearable, and sometimes neglect Him when things are great. Like her, we observe Him from every angle, and yet sometimes just hold Him… right there…not quite sure what to do with Him. Here’s a start, from The Message:
“So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life–your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life–and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it.
In this way we are like the various parts of a human body. Each part gets its meaning from the body as a whole, not the other way around.
So since we find ourselves fashioned into all these excellently formed and marvelously functioning parts in Christ’s body let’s just go ahead and be what we were made to be, without enviously or pridefully comparing ourselves with each other, or trying to be something we aren’t. If you preach, just preach God’s Message, nothing else;if you help, just help, don’t take over; if you teach, stick to your teaching; if you give encouraging guidance, be careful that you don’t get bossy; if you’re put in charge, don’t manipulate; if you’re called to give aid to people in distress, keep your eyes open and be quick to respond; if you work with the disadvantaged, don’t let yourself get irritated with them or depressed by them. Keep a smile on your face.
Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle.
Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath. Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down. Get along with each other; don’t be stuck-up. Make friends with nobodies; don’t be the great somebody. Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone.
Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.” Our Scriptures tell us that if you see your enemy hungry, go buy that person lunch, or if he’s thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness. Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good. ~ From Romans 12, The Message