Today's reading: Luke 5-8
"Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets." Luke 6: 26 NRSV
This saying of Jesus is really an eye-opener for me.
I want to be liked. I want people to speak well of me. I want to be affirmed and have most everyone's good regard. As a pastor, when people are not speaking well of me, that means two things: I am not engaging in personal relationships with those who are speaking ill and I need to find ways to bring about unity, if not agreement.
But Jesus has other ideas.
He says that it is actually a curse, maybe worse than a curse, to have folks say nice things about you. This is because those who do not follow God's lead and/or speak for God are the ones who are well-liked and admired. You and I, after journeying through the Old Testament really can know what he is talking about. In thinking of many of the prophets we heard and read about, we know that the ones who were speaking for God were not well liked nor admired.
I guess the questions to ask are these:
Do you want people to like you?
Or do you want to follow God?
It is up to you to decide.
God, do I really want to follow You? Or would I rather have everyone's good will? In Jesus' name. Amen.
Copyright 2010 Amelia G. Sims