“Being a part of the church is wonderful, blessed, and, if it weren’t for the people, would be the closest thing to heaven on earth.”
Ever felt that way? Who hasn’t? After all, people are messy; think they know everything; make massive assumptions about the motivations of others; will let you down just when you need them most; argue over the silliest of things; like to sit back and observe what’s wrong, but not get their hands dirty to fix anything; love the idea of the church growing and reaching others as long as nothing changes; etc., etc., etc. Oh and by the way, they sin.....sin a lot!!!!
Read John 2:23-25. Read it again. One more time, read it without trying to figure out whether this is ‘saving belief’ on the part of the people and put yourself in the middle of that tricky little ALL people identification.
Four Quick Observations:
1. Jesus understands, knows human nature and the reality that we are all of us, each of us marred by sin. His trust is in the Father and the Father’s plans for Kingdom Work.
2. In spite of the fact that Jesus knows us, he has neither given up on us nor does he become cynical about his mission among the nations. Ouch....apparently Jesus just doesn’t see what we see, what I see in people. (If you could ‘hear’ the tone of my fingers on the keyboard you would recognize the dripping sarcasm of that statement.)
3. A great irony of this passage is that while Jesus does not entrust himself to us, he does trust his ongoing mission with us. Talk about grace, mercy, and the promise of His power at work in our lives.
4. His grace is all the more profound and precious because he does know us, he still loves us, and he has not give up on us yet. Jesus still has hope for us.
Following the example of my Lord I pray that God will give me the wisdom I need to know people and accept the reality of my struggle with sin on this side of eternity. Following the example of my Lord I pray that God will give me the confidence in him and his work so that I will not give up on people and not trade God’s Hope for a prideful cynicism which builds up my ego while tearing people down.
Lord, Help me to set to set aside if it weren’t for the people and see them through the hope-filled eyes of Jesus. Help me to live in your abiding hope.