Something that nothing compares to
It’s funny when I bump into people at the shops or when I’m out and about and the conversation progresses to, “So what do you do?” or “What are you doing on your Sunday?” The words ‘church’ and ‘youth’ and ‘pastor’ are thrown out there in the mix, destined to trigger and bring about a variety of reactions and expressions on people’s faces.
Sometimes I think to myself, ‘maybe I should dumb this down a little… and focus on the typical youth work side of things so not to confuse, offend or concern by bringing up the whole Jesus thing too soon’. But the truth is that would totally result in that person missing the main event, the one thing behind everything that purposes and directs my life! The one thing that actually makes the lasting difference! And so as I go on and begin to explain what this looks like for me, it becomes apparent that as someone who knows and has experienced the goodness of God we carry something that nothing compares to.
The reality is there is nothing like the message and tangible experience of a loving and powerful and living God in all the earth. You can’t find it anywhere! When you first heard of it you probably didn’t have a grid for what you were hearing (maybe you still don’t!). If you stop and think about it – you’re essentially saying to people that you can open your heart to and follow this ‘Jesus’ which means you have this relationship with a divine being who did a whole bunch of stuff so your life could be transformed and now it is… and so is the way you choose to live it. That’s a crazy statement! That statement doesn’t seem logical or balanced in anyway. I think if the topic doesn’t raise eye brows maybe they didn’t quite catch or hear what it is you’re saying.
As a teenager it certainly always raised eye brows to me. There was a lot of fear too around ‘those types of people’ and what they’re on about. The ones you see on TV getting grilled on panels, the ones that you’re told about to stay clear of and keep your kids away from too. But I’m glad someone told me about it – even if at the time I wasn’t prepared to look at it in a considered manner for myself.
I don’t think it’s possible for something like this to seem completely balanced or normal because you legitimately can’t compare anything to it. It’s that in your face, it’s that different and confronting, it can’t be just “so-so”. I know that at times I have wished that it was more logical and straight forward and easy to throw into conversation but it just can’t be because its message is just to
#hectic and to
In our language all things Jesus are thrown in under the ‘Religion’ banner for definitions sake, but even within this category of ‘belief systems’ – even here, nothing compares to what is found in this Jesus, a God of relationship. Our understanding of all things ‘religious’ typically has to do with entertaining the idea that some religious figure was birthed at some point in history in some part of the world that we’re all trying to impress with our behaviour and commitment in the hope that should there exist and afterlife we’ve somehow got ourselves a parking spot in there.
The world is still convinced that Jesus is in this same mix. But He’s actually completely set apart from the rest of the pack. Like I said – you cannot compare anything (not even the dominant religions of this world) to what is found in and how we approach this Jesus. Buddhism, Atheism, Muslim, Agnostic and the like, they simply aren’t the same thing nor do they offer the same thing.
And “How exactly”… do you say? “How is it so different?”
In nothing else can you actually hold a powerful, transforming, tangible, loving relationship with a divine being! This is what Jesus invites us to… and be able to do so right now, right where you are! Seems like something out of the latest fantasy novel.
But this is the heart of what we find it Jesus. You can’t fake it… You can’t pretend. Good luck when the rubber hits the road in your life if that’s how you see it – a hopeful philosophy really won’t do much for you. You simply can’t trick this into existence in your life… it’s either there or it’s not. In all this the cool thing is it’s completely out on the table for everyone – no matter who you are or where you’ve come from.
And I know for me I don’t want people to miss the fact that they can see and have it for themselves just as I did. I don’t want people to get to the end of their life and go, “Hey bro why didn’t you tell me that this is what it was about!!? I thought it was just another out there philosophy for clean living and doing good in life.”
With Jesus we carry something deeply fascinating and impacting that simply nothing else compares with. It’s absolutely worth not shying away from too and is worth every eyebrow raise! In my life I’m unashamed of bringing it up. I’m not any more special than the next person but what I’ve seen and experienced, what has transformed in my life and the lives of others in nations all over the world – nothing compares… it’s that lit and it’s that legit! The reality of this loving and powerful God is a treasure to be sought out.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believesRomans 1:16
If you’re reading this and are impacted or stirred by the magnitude of what you’ve been reading– get in touch with us to find out more. If you have experienced God in your own life – don’t shy away from bringing it up for fear of offense or rejection as eyebrows raise. I would not be where I am today if someone didn’t share it openly with me.