I was recently informed that i have “an exceptionally diverse group of friends.” I grinned and nodded knowingly, as the tone was more of a question rather than a statement.
I would agree whole heartedly and also add, if they all were at the communion table, there would be amazing bread (gluten free too), beer, wine, grape juice, water and some seriously good whisky to go along with the food fight.
I also like salt on my food and that’s partially why i have a “diverse” group of Crazy & Sane, Artisans, Nerds, Atheists, Agnostics, Bi- Tri and a few Squares, Gay, Sad, Happy, Cynical, Ambivalent, Zealots, Neo+++, Musicians, Mystics, Misfits, Out-law and In-Lawed friends. (Lawed is how you say LORD with a North East accent).
Though I love the flavor of Bagels, Lox, Cream Cheese, Capers, Onion, Tomato and a sprinkle of fresh Dill, it would get incredibly boring everyday.
However, for the daily PB&J people, that cut off the crusts, this can be quite disconcerting.
That was Peanut Butter and Jelly for those of you that thought it might be another acronym added to the LGBTQ.
I guess what i’m pondering, is this "fear" of other" types or sects of Christians; that masks itself as "discernment" and causes us to distance ourselves from others in the Body of Christ.
It strikes against Jesus's prayer in John 17:21, "that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me."
There seems to be, particular to western Christendom, a “Sect-Xenophobia” of sorts. I felt it at the Wild Goose, 2014, a bit more so this year than the previous. Perhaps because there were more schools representing. It was the micro of the macro view on things, but it stirred up my awareness, as i attempted to answer the proverbial "what church do you go to" question.
Some might call it a Pharisaical spirit. I think it’s a bit more primal than that. It’s almost like passing a litmus test but more kin to “K-9 Tukus Sniffing”.
(Think Scratch & Sniff on church name tags)
My sense is that it is increasing as the fear in the world is increasing. Religious and Race wars plastered across TV & computer screens causing a hyper-vigilance of soul that exacerbates the fight or flight response.
Like other creatures, humans can smell fear. There are studies on the “fear pheromone” that is released through sweat during intense stress. Some studies have linked it with group hysteria in triggering an eruption.
(THAT would explain more than a few things.)
How do we shift the atmosphere when we come together as the bigger Body of Christ?
It got me thinking about what happens when a group of Jesus lovers, with the primary intention of LOVING THE OTHER, enter the room. Can we smell of incense so intoxicating people are overcome with such love it causes fear to flee?
What does LOVE smell like? Warm bread and wine? The Spikenard of a future poured out on Jesus’s feet? Frankincense for wounds and Myrrh for scars?
Does Peace smell like a duvet, fresh off the line on a spring day?
Can the fragrance from Balm of Gilead calm the inflammation of fear that is causing the disunity?
I think so.
2 Corinthians 2:14-15
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.
“By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
I’d like to be the fragrance of Christ instead of smelling of the other religious stuff that is being shoveled.
Should their be a "scratch and sniff" on this blog?
Even so come Lord Jesus.