Posts Tagged ‘community’

1 Peter 2:9-12

The problem with finding you’re “chosen”
It makes you wonder who was not
And for this early new “people”
They needed reminded, a lot

It wasn’t that they didn’t have family
Each one had a mom and a dad
But following Jesus made each one let go
Of identities they previously had

Set free from what used to give them
Their bearings among so many others
It was good to remind them they now had
A plethora of sisters and brothers

This wasn’t some new way of being
That God just decided to try
This was what He’d been doing
Since Abraham and Moses came by

To be part of God’s “chosen people”
Even living far off among strangers
Gave important and real identity
As they worshipped the king from a manger

So now as a people shown mercy
Live as people from light marvelous
Turn away from the dark desires of flesh
Be encouraged, that you’re one with us.

Though they malign you as “different”
I assure you “different” is good
It sets you apart as one who is living
As God’s own royal priesthood.

Luke 14:12-14

It’s so simple we might have missed
What Jesus said to His host
Of course, He told him to invite those
Who have little reason to boast

Invite the poor, the crippled the lame
Even if you think they won’t come
Invite the ones who walk with a cane
Who can’t pay you back when you’re done

Relate to others outside of economy
Don’t worry what you get in return
We enjoy those around us and love genuinely
When receiving is not a concern.

“What if someone is blind and has money?”
Might be an obvious response.
Invite them because of God’s Love
Not because they can meet any of your wants

We’ve been invited to His feast together
And looking both ways down the table
We are seated with infinite others
None of whom is remotely able

Able to give back even a portion
In response to the banquet He’s spread
Especially when we pause to remember
He’s offered Himself as the bread

An exciting detail, that we might miss
As He gave instructions back then –
When speaking of throwing a party, you see,
He didn’t say “if”, he said “when”.

Matthew 27:57–66

When someone dies before their time
Not a single person is ready
We allow anyone to offer help
For their hands can be more steady

A disciple from the fringes?
A rich man just converted?
Joseph of Arimathea came
When he had been alerted.

He helped to wrap the body
As all creation watched and mourned
The heaviest of weight in grief
In their stomachs continued to form

Yet even as their tears were moist
Rome was staying in the loop
The Pharisees has warned them
Of deception possible by His group

The worst thing that could happen
Would be to let them pretend He rose
And so the tomb was well guarded
By His enemies and foes.

The heavy stone was rolled in place
And guards stood just nearby
The women slowly walked away
As all the cosmos sighed.

I wonder if creation could
Feel something New was brewing?
Or if even the birds and fish
Had no idea what the creator was doing…

John 12:1-11

This final cast of characters
From years of Jesus’ service
Would be enough to make any good Jew
More than a little nervous

Gathered in the home of Lazarus
(Who was raised from unclean dead.)
And in comes an emotional woman
Washing his feet with the hair of her head

Her hair was filled with fragrance
That filled the home with scent
Making Judas seem indignant
At what such a gesture meant

Surely the value of such things
Could be used in better ways
(“Trust me”, he may have thought to himself
“I know someone who pays.”)

An awkward meal, it may have been
The dead serving the dying
And more than one among them
Who would end the week by lying

What dinner conversations
Do such moments offer friends?
When you know the lives you share
Are coming to an end?

Still Jesus welcomed all who came
From curiosity or Love
No matter our motivation
A desire to know more is enough

Enough to join a moment
Where He offers to break bread
There’s no better time, or week than now
To read through all He said

His words were not spoke hastily
For God knew they’d be received
Every word was spoken that we
His Love would come to believe.

Matthew 21:1-11

As Jesus was preparing
To enter the city of Gods people
He didn’t demand a fanfare
Or ornate windows, pews, and steeple

He chose a humble way to enter
As prophets had foretold
Even though such entry still
Invited His followers to be bold.

To be bold in their humility
To not give their Lord a steed
To not publicly declare that here
Is the King all people need.

To follow His example
And respond to the prophet’s voice
He offered them a moment
For their hearts to make a choice

Is Christ the Lord He says He is?
Or can I make Him the Lord I desire?
Is it enough to ignite a spark
That inflames a Holy Fire?

Or do I demand to see results
And see Caesars be deposed?
These were thoughts of His followers then
And we can be sure, He knows.

He knows that we have similar ones
We want a Lord who acts
We want to know if we follow Him
That God will have our back.

In the way Jesus enters, though
He invites us from the start
Not to follow to get what we want
But because New Life is in our Heart.

Philippians 1:21-30

To be so deeply loving Christ
He’s unsure which to choose
To die and be with Christ himself
Or stay alive so Christ may use

Paul wrestles briefly with this choice
(But for the readers’ sake-
As he himself is facing death
And knows their hearts would break.)

He wants every word to encourage
Whether he’s with them or apart
That they would live in ways that proclaim
And reveal their Saviors heart.

He knows that they are suffering
The same struggle that he had
And doesn’t sugar-coat the truth
Or tell them “it’s not so bad.”

He acknowledges what they endure
While drawing close together
That as they live by one spirit
No opponent can ever sever

Where God has brought salvation
By the gracious Love of Christ,
No enemy can stand against
Or charge a greater price

So stand firm, church, and know that Paul
Will do the same however he can,
And he will share in your gospel boasting
When he joins you again.

Philippians 1:1-11

The beginning of a letter
Compared to something like “Dear Church,”
Paul & Timothy began their words
So the people would not have to search

The words of the whole letter
Should be read through this appeal
Filled with thanks, full of hope-
That they’d know Gods’ love is real.

That God would bring to completion
All work that He’s begun
That even something like imprisonment
Cannot hold back the Son

He spoke with such compassion
Even though they were apart
He affirmed his desire to be with them
And knew they held him in their heart

A pastoral letter
From a shepherd to his sheep
Only something like prison bars
Would be strong enough to keep

Yet here is a reminder
The bars could not hold back
The Love of God revealed in Words
Strengthening for any attack

It comes as a reminder
For those of us with loving Words
To keep them unshared is something
Really quite absurd.

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