Thursday, November 01, 2012

Safe and Holy

An excerpt from Beautiful Outlaw, by John Eldredge:

This is why we accept the false reverence—it’s like having a relationship with someone out of state. It doesn’t intrude into your life like a spouse or a good friend does. There is safety in the distance. We secure ourselves against a fuller experience of Jesus’ presence because he is so unnerving. There is no faking it in the presence of Jesus; there is no way we can cling to our idols and agendas. We sense this intuitively, and so we keep our distance without really looking like we’re keeping our distance. By using false reverence. “The Good Lord” probably isn’t going to show up at your New Year’s Eve party.

So, when it comes to experiencing more of Jesus in your life, much depends on what we are open to experiencing—what we have been told we can experience, and, what we are comfortable with. Are you willing to let Jesus be himself with you? (p. 202)

This reminds me how often Brennan Manning calls us to know Jesus on his terms. The beautiful thing about the gospel is not that we CAN’T “fake it” in the presence of Jesus; the beautiful thing is that we don’t have to anymore. He is at one and the same time, the safest and the most holy person we will ever experience. We don’t usually equate “safe” with “holy” though! To find safety we often have to go to places and relationships of low expectations like bars and movie theaters. What would it look like to know & experience the most holy, risen Jesus Christ as our safe place of refuge?? Revolution.

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