Saturday, April 20, 2013
Saving Boston and...
"False witnesses to Jesus do not change the truth about Jesus and truly following Him."
I met Adamson many years ago at Assumption Abbey, a Trappist monastery, near Ava, Missouri.
We discussed many things over the years; and, occasionally, still, I hear from...
He tried to teach many things to me about following Jesus; and some have...
He taught simply.
When asked, he claimed his only source was God through Holy Scripture as enlightened by the Holy Spirit.
In the days following Boston, I have recalled one of those timeless conversations back in the early 80s.
I was talking to him about my studies in Europe in the early 70s.
We got around to my meetings in a pub on Heidelberg, Germany's Hauptstrausse with Colin.
Colin had a British passport but looked like Yasser Arafat; and it didn't take too long for me to learn he was in the PLO.
Though we didn't use the words back then, he was posing as a student while in a sleeper cell of religious fundamentalists who used terror to advance their...
During one conversation that grew heated, I mocked his religious leader - yeah, that one - as a murderous thug and scoffed, "Really great god that ya got there, pal! Maybe he'd tell ya to murder babies and non-combatants 'cause you're too cowardly to take on people who can fight back; but Jesus would never do that!"
Trying to explain the principles of guerrilla warfare juxtaposed to conventional resistance to superior firepower to me, I told him that I'd already read Che in college and didn't need his help to understand that coward either.
Finally, he laughed, and said so coldly, "Listen, I know you're here studying to be a professor or pastor or something equally useless; so while I live in the real world trying to make things better for my people, you can pray over the victims that get caught in the crossfire."
I said something that I regret...and never saw him again.
Adamson chided me for not talking more about Jesus with him: "He is the only One who can change such hearts."
Then he said, "Jesus would never murder the unborn, the born, or...anyone. He would not use murdering weapons or words. Jesus wants people to come together through Him to live in interdependent peace. Jesus did not come so humbly, sacrifice so greatly, rise so gloriously, and continue to reign so majestically to divide or destroy people. He came to save people from such ugliness."
Then he said in a piercing way to my spirit, "If you are really going to follow Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you must never use murdering weapons or words."
It brought back my last words to Colin and...
Then he asked questions in rapid succession.
"Would Jesus Himself perform an abortion?"
"Would Jesus Himself murder anyone?"
"Would Jesus Himself look the other way in the face of hunger, poverty, sickness, unmet needs, and the many imprisonments of the poor by the wealthy?"
"Would Jesus Himself look the other way if someone was in pain?"
"Would Jesus Himself look the other way if someone was causing pain?"
"Would Jesus Himself...?"
He asked many, many, many questions.
And whenever I did not respond quickly enough with a pejorative to behaviors unbecoming someone who claims Jesus as Lord and Savior, he'd almost shout, "You are not ready to follow Jesus!"
Before he went to his compulsory disciplines that day, he said something else that has never left me: "False witnesses to Jesus do not change the truth about Jesus and truly following Him."
While he did not explain that fully to me, I've come to understand it was his way from Him of saying to Christians who are judgmental about..., "What's that I see in your eye?"
I've come to understand it was his way from Him of saying Christians have no business telling others how to live in peace with everyone if they/we cannot live in peace with each other.
I've come to understand it was his way from Him of saying Christians who use murdering weapons or words are as bad as...
I've come to understand it was his way from Him of saying Christians who segregate and separate and exclude are no better than...
I've come to understand some religions - including so-called "Christian" ones - are just as bad as...
I've come to understand the only way to save Boston and...is Jesus.
Following Him fully.
Not the made up or pretended or reimagined or academic or ecclesiastical or traditional or...one.
The real One.
The One quoted in red letters.
No ifs or buts but lots of ands.
All of Him.
Blessings and Love!