On the Road to Ordination - What Would Jesus Do? When you are an Interfaith seminarian and you decide to title your latest FB-based blogette entry “WWJD”, you better be really sure you want to use it now. You just can’t use this powerhouse heading every time you feel like making a big point. With apologies to those who don’t like using gun metaphors around a light being of such profound goodness, WWJD is a single bullet in a monster rifle - you pretty much only have one shot to slay the beast, so you better get it right.
That said, I’m using it now. I can think of no better use of summoning the power of the imagined thought and action of the GOD-MADE-MAN Christ to consider the sad, deeply painful and dangerous decision-beast that fear made today within one part of the (not so) United Methodist Church.
If you feel some resistance rising to what I’m writing, you are invited to stay and ride the wave of your discomfort into the land of learning.
BECAUSE HERE IT IS: You don’t think this matters? You don’t think there are lives at stake? If so, you may be a tiny bit too far from the ongoing suffering of Christ in the world. You might benefit from reading this poem which only suggests where people more like you and me in most ways than not, are now exponentially more afraid for their lives, for their children’s lives.
EVERYTHING I know about Jesus (and by now that’s way more than many) points to Him loving LGBTQ+ people and fighting for their full dignity and acceptance. For all we know, Jesus was gay or queer or bi, AND he had a friend or family member who was. He would likely have had a special narrative parable on the tip of his tongue to call back to Him, the “leaders” of the UMC, who hid behind fear, secular righteousness, and oppression to strip away the humanity and safety of this special, courageous group of HUMANS based on who they LOVE and how they SERVE. In the end, Jesus would call these fearful ones to love each other and care for each other with full equality.
Some may argue that Jesus was selective or that he was the author of the few bible phrases that get thrown around to justify this kind of non-sense, but I don’t believe that. There is no studied evidence that Jesus was mean or even concerned with pettiness, perpetuating injustice or disrespecting people in any way. And we know that Jesus never wrote any of that stuff.
Nope. Not What Jesus Did.
I believe God, or Jesus, the Divine, Beloved Community, Fellowship, or that Big Burning Sun Dieity-Thing, has a plan for which today’s heartbreak, the culmination of months and centuries of pain, will come to be seen as the inflection point where hate from a still scary few turned into fuel for the many, across so many lines, who live and work for Jesus’ unitive compassion and justice.
Let us pray:
Burn Hot and Fast, Sweet Lord. Use your Love to Open the hearts of your fearful. Re-Turn them to you and your Son Jesus. Ignite in them a passion to jump into the service of helping each other and healing our planet. And may all Your children be safe in Your great mercy and grace until LOVE becomes the only answer. Amen.
What Would Jesus Do? Is a powerful question. But it might keep you in your head, out of the Heat of Love.
A better question for love in action is:
Having considered Jesus, What Will YOU Do?
Elizebeth's post was inspired by THIS POEM.
Notes for the Way
This is a space for Journey Guides to post "field notes" and observations along the path.