Thursday, November 5, 2009

Isn't it Funny?

I never blame myself when I'm not hitting. I just blame the bat
and if it keeps up, I change bats. After all, if I know it isn't
my fault that I'm not hitting, how can I get mad at myself?
Yogi Berra

In light of the recent final game of the World Series, finding the above quote this morning proved to be both interesting (in the timing) and quite disturbing to me. Isn't it funny that those of us who would take on the name of Christ, those of us who would call ourselves "followers of Jesus," often will go to great lengths to avoid introspection?

Our flesh, the fallen state into which we are born is all about protecting - me. Of course, in some areas this is good. God "programmed" self preservation into us. But He never desired that we would protect ourselves at the expense of others. We, myself first of all, are much too quick to "change bats," as Yogi Berra put it. We cling to family, friends, jobs, Church as long as it feels good to - me. After all it is all about me, or is it?

When problems arise with family, friends, jobs, and Church and it's time to examine the cause of those problems, isn't it funny that it stops being all about me? "I certainly am not the cause of this problem or that problem. Don't they see what they have done wrong? Where is their integrity? I think they need to take a long, hard look at themselves!" Some how it is no longer about me.

Be careful Christians, be careful Church, be careful Kathi. We have told ourselves, those around us, and God that we long to be like Jesus. We stick our chests out and say that we imitate Christ. But Christ was mocked and rejected by the spiritual leaders of His day. He was physically beaten. He was labeled a madman. Do we really want to imitate Christ? Jesus said, "Father, forgive them."

Now, you might say that I'm "preaching to the choir." And my response would be that you are exactly right! And I am in the choir! You see, the only Jesus many will know is the Jesus they see in me. The choir sings God's praises with the most clarity when we're not on stage!

Isn't it funny that sometimes when life gets hard we take our eyes off Jesus? Isn't it funny that when trials, dilemmas, and hardships come we tend to blame "the bat?" Let's remember God's promise to forgive our sins if we confess them to Him (I John 1:9). Not only is it safe to look at ourselves and how we have contributed to a problem, it is one of the ways that we grow. Thankfully in God's economy there is no such thing as a useless, broken bat. And keeping that in mind, may each one of us take a good, hard look at ourselves because, in the end, it's not funny at all.

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