…do justly, …love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God.
One day a lady from church made the comment, “We have a church full of misfits, and I fit right in.” Upon first hearing a statement like that, as the pastor’s wife, I might be inclined to take offense. I mean really, what does that say about me?
I can remember a discussion with my husband I while back and stating, “No one is normal but us.” Now, I can honestly say I believe no one is “normal” because everybody’s “normal” is different. We are all reflections of our upbringing and experiences, and no 2 of us have the exact same life circumstances from which to draw.
If we are all so different, then how can we ever walk in unity? My first thought goes to the Bible. We have had the privilege of traveling to different parts of the world, and let me assure you, “normal” Africa is not the same as “normal” America, for an example.
In Zambia there is something called “load sharing”, and at any given time, your water or electricity might cut off for hours at a time. You cannot easily hop into your car and run to McDonald’s for supper if the electricity goes off because we never even saw a McDonald’s! You must learn to be flexible and improvise because your normal routine frequently gets interrupted. However, one similarity we’ve witnessed between the nations is the Spirit of the Lord we felt during worship. We must base our normal on the examples we find in the Bible, not upon the circumstances of life.
Matthew 1:17 tells us there are 14 generations from Abraham to David, 14 generations from David to the Babylonian exile, and 14 generations from Babylon until Christ. Now, Abraham built an altar, David drew plans for a temple and Solomon erected the temple, Daniel prayed in his room three times a day, and, each of these mighty men worshiped God in their generation in a way they they thought was “normal”, then Jesus….
Think about John the Baptist. The Pharisees & Sadducees had been worshiping in the Jewish temple for generations. They followed a strict set of rules and rocked along like “normal”.
John came from the wilderness wearing fur instead of linen, eating locust and honey instead of bread, and baptizing people in the dirty Jordan River! People flocked to John amazed by his new message of repentance, then Jesus….
John did something extremely abnormal. Instead of holding tight to his followers, he told them to go and follow another. John encouraged his “church membership”, so to speak, to leave and join “the Jesus movement”. That’s not normal!
Jesus looked the part, unlike John, but His methods were extraordinary. Jesus spoke to sinners; He broke bread with them; He took time to minister to women; and, He worked on the Sabbath. Jesus healed Jews and Gentiles. His love showed no boundaries. Jesus did not excuse sin. On the contrary, He accepted people where they were, ministered to their needs, and then encouraged them “to go and sin no more” (John 8:11).
Our “new normal” should be to follow after Jesus. Read about Him, pray to Him, and live like Him.
Live your life according to Micah 6:8.
“…what doth The Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”