Thursday, September 1, 2011

Live Urgently

I <3 Sourdough.  Someone should get me a shirt that says that.  Once upon time, I dropped my favorite bakery to get a loaf of sourdough.  The bins were empty.  #sadface  I saw someone rustling around in the back of the bakery.  “Hey, any chance you have some sourdough back there?”  The baker looked at me somewhat indifferently and responded, “Well, yes, we do, but it just came out of the oven.  It’s still hot.”  (Like that’s a bad thing?)

“I’ll take two!”  I ate half the first loaf before I got to my car.  More on that later, but first, a word from our Sponsor.
As they were going along the road, someone said to Him, “I will follow You wherever You go.” And Jesus said to him, “The foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.”  And He said to another, “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, permit me first to go and bury my father.”  But He said to him, “Allow the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim everywhere the kingdom of God.”  Another also said, “I will follow You, Lord; but first permit me to say good-bye to those at home.”  But Jesus said to him, “No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”  (Luke 9:57-62)
Followers of Jesus are expected to have a sense of urgency about His mission.  This may be the saddest commentary on Christianity in America.  We tend to think showing up to church three out of four Sundays *is* Christianity.  Would you challenge me if I suggested that 95% of all those church attenders do not tell another person about their faith in Jesus even once a year?  99%?  Where is our sense of urgency?

Back to the bakery.  In the course of time, I had the opportunity to move to a new city.  I dropped by a well-recommended bakery with pen and paper in hand.  “Do you bake sourdough bread?  Oh, you do?  Do you bake it regularly?  Great!  Please tell me, on what day and at what time does that bread come out of the oven… because I’m going to be here when it comes out of the oven.”  I had a sense of urgency about that bread and I prepared myself to be ready for it.  Followers of Jesus prepare themselves in advance to make the most of doors of opportunity that open before them.  Share your faith, give your talents and treasure, meet a neighbor's need - urgently.

By the way, Jesus was born where?  O Little Town of Bethlehem… which is translated “House of Bread”.  Be ready.  Be urgent.

Clark H Smith

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