Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Big and Little
We’re used to thinking of huge solutions to massive problems. No day passes but what we don’t think of the world’s problems, great as they are. We hear of all the difficulties our country faces and we wish for some big “magic wand” to give a quick and decisive “fix” to things. Politicians promise wide-ranging solutions. But healthy skepticism usually greets their visions.
Jesus had a big vision. It was the kingdom or reign of God. It was the central focus of his ministry and his key affirmation: God reigns! A few weeks ago in Knoxville, Tennessee I saw a bumper sticker on a car in a parking lot. It said: “God rules. Always has. Always will.” God’s rule is coming in all its fullness. It is also taking shape here and now, inaugurated in the ministry of Jesus himself.
When Jesus talks about seeing the signs of the kingdom, a preview of the reign of God, he doesn’t point to the big answers to the big troubles. We don’t find a honed social blueprint for the great society, a pointed program to meet all problems.There is wisdom in this, but I think McKim misses a point. God will indeed fix the world one person at a time - that message has been clear on this blog forever. But that does not mean political action is something Christians should not do. Political action is necessary to a) to allow those of us of faith to in face express it - Without such freedom the gospel could die, and b) because at some point Christianity will advance to the point where it becomes part of the political realm - that is, after all the definition of a Kingdom is political in nature.
What we find instead are his parables that encourage us to look at the “little things.”
To often in Christianity we make a point when we need to state an equilibrium. God is not apolitical - He is very political, but He also has priorities and they are that we need to get ourselves straightened away in order to do politics well.
Which brings me to my second point. God calls some to big things and ALL to little things. Too often those called to big things do not make room for new people and that results in a lot of hurt, but we called to little things cannot commit the same foul. WE cannot deride those called to big things.
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