Monday, July 2, 2012

The "Complexity" of Following Christ

The Gospel for Mass today was about people asking to follow Jesus, and his short, almost dismissive responses.

The priest-celebrant gave a short homily in which he emphasized that basically we sometimes, some of us, choose how we are going to follow Jesus, often doing good things (like certain devotions or emphases) but that the essential thing is to Follow Jesus, which often may mean something we're not doing, something that we don't really "get," something that is way outside of our comfort zone, or "zone of predictability."

For instance (and this is my example) a fairly wealthy 18 year old, contrary to her parents' wishes, goes to Uganda, and ends up adopting six destitute orphans, and has pretty much settled herself down to live there for the rest of her life. She is convinced that God called her to this, and that she has no other choice, in love, but to do it. This was way out of her comfort zone and her zone of predictability, as it would be for most of us. But, there she is, and very happy.

So, my point is this. There are a gazillion devotions to follow. There are trillions of different prayer-forms to use. There are loads of vocations to choose from and live out. There are umpteen bazillion prayer books one can buy, and 42 versions of each to choose from. There are n to the 40th translations of the bible, and yet, none of it matters a whole heck of a lot if we are not following Jesus.

But what does following Jesus really mean? Well, a clue is in the beatitudes. But the real thing is in what Jesus said about his own purpose.

"I came to do the Father's will."

We, like Jesus, need to carefully, honestly, sincerely discern the Father's will, and just do it. Like Katie Davis did - is.

It seems easier said than done, though. (There is a lot of room to screw up or miss the boat.)

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