Saturday, June 23, 2012
"I am not ashamed of Jesus."
I'll never forget shopping for a cross about 35 years ago in a big mall jewelry store near Edison, New Jersey.
When I asked the salesman if he'd let me see the store's stock of crosses, he asked, "Do you want one with or without the little man on it?"
As time has passed and I pray and try to be His with increasing passion, that question keeps coming back to me.
I kinda grew up in days when men didn't wear a lotta jewelry unless, uh, you know, they were kinda...
It wasn't considered manly.
While I don't know who makes up the rules for that kinda stuff, the rules for that kinda stuff started changing when Bo Jackson showed up in a Royals uniform with a diamond stud in his ear and Michael Jordan won a bunch of NBA crowns with more bling than Cher and...
You know what I mean; and if you don't, you gotta stop hanging out with people who are only just like you in defiance/rebellion of/against His expectation of unity despite diversity in, through, and for Him.
Go to a biker rally sometime and see real unity amid diversity; and, come to think of it, there's a book about...
Conditioning is a hard thing to overcome.
It's like denominational pride.
It has nothing to do with following Jesus and being in communion with people who follow Jesus representing the rainbow colors of the covenant.
So I've been resistant to those kinda changes.
Of course, our Lord provides apocalyptic moments or Damascus Road experiences to shake us out of, uh, ourselves and back to...
I think of the day a few years ago when I walked into the restroom before worship, looked into the mirror, and blurted, "Dang, you look ridiculous!"
Now I'm not saying that people who continue to wear silly vestments look ridiculous.
Maybe I am.
Ever read Matthew 6:25-34?
I wonder if we'll be wearing collars and Genevan gowns when we do the Revelation worship thing.
Don't be so defensive.
BTW, you holy ones who snicker at colleagues in vestments but still wear ties and suits every Sunday which, uh, is tantamount to wearing vestments 'cause you wear the same thing whenever you do holy stuff gotta ask in a KD kinda way if wearing expensive gravy rags on steroids and stuff like that helps you identify with the poor or even the Suffering Servant Himself.
I'm just asking.
I'm just thinking.
It's a KD thing.
He called us to do His thing more than anyone else's.
Why do you wear what you wear?
Is it for Him or yourself or because somebody else decided that...?
Despite conditioning, I wear jewelry; and really don't care what anybody thinks about it because every piece symbolizes something about my relationship with Him/His and causes people to ask which opens doors to talk about Jesus.
It's like my missionary mule.
I ride because, uh, I like to ride; yet it also opens doors to talk about Jesus if I don't come off like a...
I wear a wedding band for obvious reasons.
I wear a ring that I bought just outside of the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem that has an inlay of the Decalogue for, uh, obvious reasons.
I just got a big and, according to my wife, gaudy "Lion of Judah" ring because, well, uh, He's about to roar back as the...
I wear two crosses.
One is made of nails and reminds me of what He did for me/us and what I/we must do for Him to prove faith's veracity.
The other was given to me at ordination back on 5/8/77. It's the cross used as the seal for my old denomination (UPCUSA) prior to merger into the PCUSA in the alphabet soup of denominational division/pride. Anyway, it's a prominent Celtic cross surrounded by porcelain inlays of other symbols highlighting God's sovereignty, Holy Spirit, Biblical revelation, and mission. It's beautiful; or, uh, was beautiful. The porcelain has chipped over the years like, uh, me if you know what I mean.
I don't like to wear jewelry; yet I do.
I do because I need reminders about really important stuff and because people ask me about it and it opens doors to talk about Jesus.
Also, it reminds me of a struggle akin to Romans 7:7ff.
I guess what I wear somehow exposes who I am or want to be or...
That's why I stopped wearing vestments.
That's why I wear...
That's why I ride...
Blessings and Love!