I've been reading Donald Miller before bed (again--I've read all of his books at least 3 times) and last night, these words really made me look at things ever so slightly differently than the moment before.
"I was reading Brian Greene's book The Elegant Universe, in which the Columbia professor talks about potentials of the superstring theory...I was struck at one point when Greene indicated the possibility that multiple dimensions may be laid out against each other as slices of a loaf of bread or tissues in a great brain....I began to wonder how odd it would be if we existed in the mind of God....And, out of this other place, this other existence, Christ stepped to inhabit ours.
If you believe Jesus was God, and He came to earth to walk among us, the first thing you start considering is that He might actually care. Why else would something so great become something so small? He didn't close Himself off in a neighborhood with the Trinity; He actually left His neighborhood and moved into ours, like a very wealthy and powerful man moving to the slums of Chicago or Houston or Calcutta, living in the streets as a peasant."
Miller goes on to list personality traits and characteristics he believes Jesus had/has..
1. He believed all people were equal. (He hung out with those society rejected most--THINK ABOUT THAT). "The more unsavory the characters, the more at ease they seemed to feel around Jesus"...in Contrast, Jesus got a chilly response from more respectable types. Pious Pharisees thought him uncouth and worldly..."
2. He was "ugly". Yep. "He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised and we esteemed him not." Isaiah 53:2-3 NIV Pretty sure if Jesus came to America today, he would be ignored, rejected, and taken advantage of the way most people who don't have the "beautiful person" halo are in this extremely shallow, image obsessed society. This makes me love him even more. "One might believe that the unsightliness of Christ was a statement of humility, this this isn't true. It would be inconsistent if Christ's looks were a statement of humility. They were, rather, A STATEMENT OF TRUTH, and our seeing them as humility only suggests an OBVIOUS PREJUDICE." Kind of beating a dead horse here, but be very careful in judging others based on their looks. Speaking from experience, you may have to eat your words or thoughts when you lose your God-given looks (whether it's to aging, weight gain, or your own perspective,,) that you did nothing to earn. And, it's not loving others well.
3. He liked to be with people. "He never sat down and wrote a mission statement. Instead, He accumulated friends and allowed them to write about Him, talk a bout Him, testify about Him. Each of the Gospels reveals a Christ who ate with people, attended parties, drank with people, prayed with people, traveled with people, and worked with people. I can't imagine He would do this unless He actually like people and cared about them. Jesus built our faith system entirely on relationships, forgoing marketing efforts and spin. Not only that, but one of the criticisms of Christ was that He was a friend of pagans. Not that He hung out with pagans, BUT THAT HE WAS THEIR FRIEND."
4. He had no fear of intimacy. ....this is something I love about Him and hope I can learn from Him. Intimacy scares the hell out of me. There is such potential for being hurt and taken advantage of..
5. He was patient. He was always around crowds of people who misunderstood his motives, left Him alone when they said they wouldn't, and asked Him countless questions and favors. The only time He lost His temper was in anger toward self righteous, pious pharisees.
6. HE WAS KIND. enough said :)
just thoughts from someone who has had their fill lately of Christian culture, American culture, and well, the thoughts in their own head. It's all part of the journey. I just want to be freed from small minds, boxed in formulas, and this self loathing that stops me from loving others the way they need to be loved. Jesus, help me.