Why does my opinion matter?
Just why does what I say, post on Facebook, comment in WordPress (and all social media), agree/disagree with others, change my profile picture to (or not), stay silent … why does all that matter? Why should anyone be looking at “my stuff” and think it good or bad, clean or unclean, right or wrong – simply because I am a Christian?
Why does what I say or not say, how I say it, with what tone of voice and mannerisms … why does that matter simply because I am a Christian? Why should I get “picked on” simply because I am “a Christian”? In a period of living where there is so much instant messaging, so many ways to be heard, so many being heard, so many adding instant messages, thoughts, opinions, pictures, colours and sounds – why should what “I” say and do “matter”?
Am I the only one who finds irony in this?
That well-worn frustration of “we are not being heard” as a Church, as Christians, as a faith … that is at odds with posting something virulent (or amazing!) and then being pilloried (or “shared”) across the globe (for the very same words no one sees/hears)?
My voice and your voice matter.
The Jesus I love did not say and do stuff to go viral. The God Soft Hands Jesus I know and love just “did stuff” and ”said stuff” because He was Jesus. And He did that with a generosity of spirit and love (that I am so blown-away by – that I write about Him almost every day!). He means that much to me – He has changed me that much.
Jesus was just one man. Who walked and taught for just three years. But who was Jesus His whole life. There was no “on-bible” or “off-bible” with Jesus.
Jesus took twelve under His wing. Even as He held, and holds, the whole of creation in His Love. Jesus did not try and go viral. Jesus did not ponder what would be listened to or not listened to. What would be seen or not seen. What would be a great message or a message needing “some more work first.”
Jesus did not hold strategy sessions, marketing meetings, organise annual conferences, develop faith schools, admin and a hierarchy – all the stuff of a “new institution”. Neither did He ignore the existing institutions. Nor did He dismiss anything or anyone. The “excluded” beliefs. Not in a personal connection. He simply invited: Follow me. Above all else love Me. Love each other always. Sin no more.
And we have been picking that apart ever since. Trying to make it “one size fits all”. Trying to make it “easy”. Splitting the atom into ever-more denominations. Ever more faiths. Ever more differences. And then complaining about not being heard.
I think we are being heard. I think we each matter. And the very reason we think we don’t think we are and we do – is because “we are and we do”. It’s just that we don’t control “the message” as we want to.
And we don’t have the choice of “on-bible or off-bible”. Everything we do – each of us – all the time – every day – even as we sleep – all of that matters to Someone.
(Have you ever considered what would happen if your post went viral? How much time would be taken in answering (or ignoring) comments? How much energy would you invest in being polite (because not being polite would not look good)? How many comments would disagree with your post – and how would you handle that? How little of your life would be left as you attempted to make each commenter feel important by responding quickly? How many would you make feel small by responding quickly without reflecting? How your loved ones would feel as you spent (even more) hours on WordPress? How much you would NOT write because of that post? How much time you WOULD lose with your Lord because of that post? How many you might lose to the Lord because of how you handled the aftermath?)
I have had some very precious feedback in the three years I have been trying to “take dictation from GSHJ”. I know He matters. I know He changes lives. I know He does that.
How many lives have I changed, what difference have I made … ?
How many, Paul – how many – come on – don’t tease … ?
That’s who has changed.
(after that … who’s counting … and why?)