In 1 Cor 9 Paul writes that "to the Jews I became like a Jew," and then "to those under the law I became like one under the law," and then "to those not having the law I became like one not having law," and then he concludes with "to the weak I became weak."There's a glaring absence in his list. The opposite of being "under the law" is "not being under the law." The opposite of weak is . . . Paul doesn't mention it.After the "to the weak I became weak" part should have said "and to the strong I am strong."But he doesn't say that.He doesn't say he's become strong to those who are strong.He only says he's become weak to the weak.If you've ever been to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, you know what this is like. An AA meeting is a room full of people who are done pretending. There are no facades. There is no acting. And it's overwhelmingly powerful. Everybody in that room is in recovery from addiction, and they all know each other's games, masks, and manipulations. A whole world of posturing and pretending is simply absent. You're there because you have hit bottom, at least most of the time, and you need others who knows how it feels.Write Anne Lamott says that the most powerful sermon in the world is two words: "Me too."Me too.When you're struggling,when you are hurting,wounded, limping, doubting,questioning, barely hanging on,moments away from another relapse,and somebody can identify with you-someone knows the temptations that are at your door,somebody has felt the pain that you are feeling,when someone can look you in the eyes and say, "Me too,"and they actually mean it-it can save you.When you aren't judged,or lectured,or looked down upon,but somebody demonstrates that they get it,that they know what it's like,that you aren't alone,that's "me too."Paul does not say, "To the strong I become strong."He only says, "To the weak I am weak."-Rob BellJesus Wants to Save Christians
Monday, January 26, 2009
I'm sorry to keep going on and on about one tiny little verse- half of a verse! But I ran across this and I want to share . . .
I find myself in a book jam. I have too many good books started at the same time, and when I have time to read I can't decide which ...
Today the earth is pressed against this wide white emptiness and there is still this gap in me, this hesitation. I've been thinking a...