A band of bickering fools

 Is my reality any different from yours? Really now, is my view on life better than yours, or is it just a bit different at times? We get so focused on how people see us, interpreting our actions in light of how they actually view life from their vantage point, don't we? If we are being drawn by God, taught at his feet, we may not always interpret life the same way, but we serve the one who can help us live together in the harmony he brings. When we insist others see or interpret life exactly the same way we do, we create much distress in this world, don't we? If we allow God to be the first thing others see in us, there might just be a greater chance of finding truth together.

Jesus said, “Don’t bicker among yourselves over me. You’re not in charge here. The Father who sent me is in charge. He draws people to me—that’s the only way you’ll ever come. Only then do I do my work, putting people together, setting them on their feet, ready for the End. This is what the prophets meant when they wrote, ‘And then they will all be personally taught by God.’ Anyone who has spent any time at all listening to the Father, really listening and therefore learning, comes to me to be taught personally—to see it with his own eyes, hear it with his own ears, from me, since I have it firsthand from the Father. No one has seen the Father except the One who has his Being alongside the Father—and you can see me. (John 6:43-46)

Jesus actually showed us a couple of important things here: 1) We aren't the ones in charge; 2) We won't ever come into relationship with him without God's 'moving' us in that direction; 3) We aren't capable of living 'upright' lives apart from God's help; and 4) We need to stop talking long enough to really listen if we are to learn what God has for us in this life. Let's begin with this concept of us not being in charge. As rough as that one may be for some of us to really swallow, God is the one calling the shots, not us. The sooner we accept that one, the better off we will be! 

God draws us to his table, we don't 'belly up there' on our own. We might think we are seeking some form of 'enlightenment' but God is the one who is giving us the hunger, drawing us closer and closer, until we finally fall to our knees and admit our need of a Savior. Remember - we are NOT in charge - so even the desire to come to him and learn from him is GIVEN to us. As Jesus points out, God does the work of putting us together, helping us to stand upright lives. We aren't going to ever get our lives together on our own, despite our efforts to do so repeatedly.

Learning isn't something that comes through osmosis. It is a process of applying ourselves to the truth that is taught. To learn, we must settle into the process of learning. That process involves putting aside the other stuff that distracts and then using the truth (information) we have been given. I have read numerous articles on how to make the perfect tenon joint, but have I actually gone into the shop, set up the tools, cut the wood, and made one? Nope! I have the knowledge of 'how to' do it, but I haven't actually applied the knowledge. We cannot expect to stand upright in this world if we are given all this truth and then never apply it to our lives.

Jesus reminds us that we are to be taught 'personally' by God. We aren't going to learn truth apart from spending time at the feet of Jesus. We can bicker amongst ourselves as much as we want, thinking we each have a 'special' or 'unique' view of what life should be like, but until we stop bickering, settle down in his presence, and really listen to truth, we will always just be a band of bickering fools. Just sayin!


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