People at once recognised Him

“He’s a legend in his own lifetime!”

Have you ever known someone like that? Someone who draws people to them – who seems to “have something” others want to be around?  Not “fame” nor “power” nor “witty repartee” nor anything you can put your finger one … ?  The respect of those older, the awe of those younger, the affection of their own age.

That phrase was said about one of our children, at school, by someone to one of our other children. And we love all our own children – we are biased in our opinion of their greatness. But exactly what our son was/did that caused others to say that … ?  We could only guess.

“When Jesus and the disciples had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret and moored the boat. When they got out of the boat, people at once recognized him, and rushed about that whole region and began to bring the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he went, into villages or cities or farms, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged him that they might touch even the fringe of his cloak; and all who touched it were healed.” Mark 6:53-56

What we do know about our son is that he has a forgiving nature, an accepting nature, a sense of fun, a sense of purpose, a purpose that also allows others to be themselves, and a reticence that I have never mastered. A frugality with words.  Unless he chooses to open up.  And then it is a true gift!

“When they got out of the boat, people at once recognized him …”

(so why do they not recognise us followers and believers?)

I remember as our children were growing up, we had a strong relationship my wife and I. So much in common, so much busyness, so little time and energy for each other – just enough for an occasional cuddle in a coma!  And then all too soon our children were grown up, living in their own places.  And the two of us were left with so much space to fill.

“Empty Nest Syndrome” they call it.

A loss of direction and purpose.  An emptiness.  A mourning of the busyness of being a full-on parent.  And a reality check: just what do I have in common with the other (now defunct of busyness parent) I always  thought of as my loving and passionate soulmate?

(I know I am not alone – “a syndrome” needs more than just me)

Well, I used to see discipling and kingdom stuff as being like parents. Me me me!!  Us us us!! Busyness busyness busyness!  Coma cuddles coma cuddles coma cuddles!  All that nurturing, protecting, providing for, holding together, protecting from those who would do harm … this family of followers. Whilst at the SAME TIME  …

Suffering an “empty nest syndrome” – finding the (public) Sunday family of followers so often a duty and obligation – a habit and routine – a “we must do it for the family”.  And a huge heap of guilt!  That I SHOULD attend if I call myself a proper Christian!!

Is this what holds us together – our Father’s family – the Bride of Christ?  Is it just our busyness than binds us together? And might we be together out of habit – with too much invested – and too scared to separate – too scared to (publicly) consider divorce?  And might the result so often be that we still live in the same “family home” – … we still welcome visitors … we still lead normal lives.  And that is the “public face” of our relationship.   Yet the reality is that we have less and less in common – that we lead separate lives.  Because I lived like that for quite some time. And when I see the same “in church” … it stings.

And others will tell me (they have told me – they do still tell me) that I am wrong – that I do not know “the congregation” well enough – that I am “missing something” – that I am not seeing all the good stuff (and that if I turned up occasionally I would see what they see)!

And that is true.

Just like it is also true that married couples really do live together separately …  They do say the right (polite) words, do the same (public) holding of hands, do the same practiced smiles, and the same practiced slights, with the same tolerance, and the same coolness  – simply because what would people think if we didn’t?  I recognise all that because I have lived like that.  I had a syndrome!  It is not something you easily forget.

“When they got out of the boat, people at once recognized him …”

(so why do “they” not recognise “us”?)

I think the uncomfortable (and unspoken) truth may be … they do.

13 thoughts on “People at once recognised Him

  1. Part of this reminds me of a song:

    People pass
    And even if they don’t know my name
    Is there evidence that I’ve been changed
    When they see me, do they see You?
    (from Sidewalk Prophets – Live Like That)

    These things God has been showing me how to live out one day at a time, but it’s a long and arduous process. Just when I think I’ve arrived, I’m humbled again by how short I fall, and just when I think I’ve made no progress, he shows me just how far I’ve come.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi John – what a fab song! Thank you – I want to live like that!

      I have come to the happy conclusion that “arriving” is a little like climbing a never-summiting mountain – every time you think you have – there is another peak. So – instead of the intensity of purpose – I now just “purpose” to enjoy the journey, smell the fragrances He places in my path, enjoy the wonderful people He brings alongside, and wonder at the way He shows me Himself in so many and so much – so much so that I begin to forget there is a summit!

      And THAT, for me, is liberating!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Paul, “I now just “purpose” to enjoy the journey, smell the fragrances He places in my path, enjoy the wonderful people He brings alongside, and wonder at the way He shows me Himself in so many and so much ” YES, for me that has been what it’s about all along.

    Sometimes I can whip myself up into a frenzy setting goals, determining to “get it all done” before He takes me. But this journey, my relationship with Him and the people He place in my path, and His timing are the things that matter. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Paul, this post gave me a cozy feeling. So much of what I have gone through and still go through. Ongoing. I just love my Friend, Jesus. and I love you, my brother, for sharing from your heart. 😀
    me

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love the way you turned this oh so important question upon itself!

    “(so why do “they” not recognise “us”?)

    I think the uncomfortable (and unspoken) truth may be … they do.”

    Again, my dearest brother, a cause for reflection?!! Great post, as usual Paul!

    Like

Thoughts and questions are precious ...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s