Sunday, October 12, 2008

The following excerpt from a sermon by Francis Wayland 1796-1865, is addressing the fact that Jesus, who could have rightly required to be served while on earth, rather chose to serve.

"Jesus felt himself under obligation to set an example of obedience to his own rules. "The Son of man," said he, "came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." "Which," said he, "is greater, he that sittith at meat, or he that serveth? but I am among you as he that serveth." Would it not be well if, in this respect, we copied more minutely the example of our Lord, and held ourselves responsible for the performance of the very same duties which we so willingly impose upon our brethren? We best prove that we believe an act obligatory, when we commence the performance of it ourselves. Many zealous Christians employ themselves in no other labor than that of urging their brethren to effort. Our Saviour acted otherwise."

The highlighted sentence is the one that spoke most to me; maybe spoke is too mild a word - cut, goaded, rebuked might be closer. It is an easy task indeed, to sit behind a computer and quote from men and women of God who have in many cases paid dearly for the opportunity to have their words preserved.

"God is not the God of the dead, but of the living."

There was no shortage of deeds that came to mind when I read this passage. And as well, no shortage of excuses. So, as I prepare for worship today let me remember, as the picture I chose symbolizes, I have pledged to be "A friend for life", to those in need of Christ's manifold resources.

Photo - I'm afraid I have failed to note the author of this haunting picture of a slum girl who eats stale noodles from a plastic bag in Mumbaie. It may be the photographers name is Ambu, or it may have come from the A.P.


Mel said...

Oh, wow, Fred! I'm just now reading this post for the first time, and I'm blown away by it. I so appreciate you posting this.

To me what this post says (among many other things) is that it's so important to put everything -- our money, our time, our energy, our passion, our action, and our resources -- where our mouth is. And as Chonda Pierce said, as this principle relates to our kids, "Whether or not we walk what we talk will make the difference between our kids buying what we say or not buying it." (That's the heart of what she said, but it might not be the exact words.)

I so desperately want to live according to this truth, and in an effort to do so, I didn't hit the "publish your comment" button until after I had completed a donation of $20 to "Charity Water." This is something I've been wanting to do since I read Pastor Eric's post about it, and when I read your post, God was like "So what are you waiting for?"

Thank you for making it possible for God to give me that final shove of motivation through you. :)

Have an awesome day, my friend!


FCB said...

Hi Mel,
Thanks for your comments, and the quote by Chonda Pierce is perfect.
By the way, when I saw this picture I knew immediately it was the one I wanted for this quote, these young girls, with the wear of poverty on them, almost looking out at me as to say, 'do you believe the words I happen to be standing under?' A picture speaks a thousand words, and I felt that same shove of motivation.
God is good,