Thursday, March 26, 2009

"E-knee, Me-knee, My-knee, Moe"

I know I'm not the only one who remembers how we use to choose the persons to 1. be on our team or 2. who was going to be 'it' first; as in a game of hide and seek or something along those lines. I remember the goal for me was to be sure I performed at the top of my game every time we did play one the many games we played as children, because it would assure me a spot on a good team the next time we played.

However, the very opposite was the case when, for some odd reason and, of course, strange twist of fate, I didn't do as well as in times past. Which for me was like saying the sky was falling, because I was such an awesome gamer no matter what we were playing. (smile) The opposite being, I was't picked by the best players as in times past, and all because of the one bad game I may have had. The really bad part was you had to perform at the top of your game 'consistently' for a minimum of three games after the one bad game in order for the top players to reconsider bringing you back to the top. It was almost like being dropped to Triple-A ball from the Major Leagues, and you had to prove you were worth being recalled.

The sad part of this post is: we see this being done to someone almost every single day and we say nothing because secretly this is how we feel. We pick and we choose who we want to be a part of our ministries and we try our very best to get only the well polished of persons, or those who have a decent amount, if not, a whole lot of money. However, those who are marginal and who don't have a considerable amounts of money or resources to offer we don't want them really to be a part of the ministry.

I read an article about a man who committed a very horrible crime and was convicted of it, and spent a lot of years in prison for the crime. Once he was released a pastor stepped forwarded after having had a conversation with the man in question and offered for him to live at his home for a few months until he was on his feet. The people in the same town as the pastor; which some I'm sure were perhaps members of his church, didn't want the man in 'their' town.

When did God give us permission to pick and to choose who we are to minister to or to try to help in our lives? I understand the need for caution and all of that, but when do we really start living the life He has called us to live for Him? The scriptures tell us that He has given us the ministry of reconciliation 2 Cor 5:18-19; so when are we going to start with reconciling? Or are we satisfied with the way we do things now?

Reconcile: To cause to be friendly again; to conciliate anew; to restore to friendship; to bring back to harmony; to cause to be no longer at variance....

'E-knee, Me-knee, My-knee, Mo'....


Z said...

Okay, I have to admit it.
When we first went to the church we've attended now for 6 years, I turned to Mr. Z and said "You know, it's a nice place, but the people are 'kinda icky'..." I did. We laughed at how awful I sounded, but I felt that way.
Turned out, those 'icky people' have turned to be the nicest people I could have ever met...Godly, sweet, kind and caring.
They wouldn't have been who I'd "pick and choose" THEN but they would be today!
I need to remember that.

sue said...

IHS - I've always had a feeling about things like this. For instance, people who get out of prison after having served their time.

It should be considered that they are starting over, yet I know that in many instances they are not accepted back into society and trusted.

This is a difficult dilemma.

Z said...

Sue, that is a dilemma, for sure.
I can't see how anybody could totally trust someone who's been in prison. Serving time inside doesn't change a heart or mind, probably. In some cases, it hardens both, from what they say.
Still, they have done 'their time'...but, that 'time' is no panacea, no guarantee.
I guess it all boils down to TRUST, do we really TRUST the Lord? SHOULD we trust the ex con?

Papa Frank said...

Christians get much of the story of creation right:

1 - Creation
2 - Fall
3 - Forgiveness
4 - Redemption

If there is a weak point here it is the idea of redemption. We are so excited to see people being forgiven but are we just as anxious to give them a chance to show themselves redeemed? Jesus intentionally picked the person who would betray him to be one of his most intimate inner circle of 12 disciples. He even gave him the job of holding the money for the group. All because He followed the will of the Father. I admit that this is not something that I am good at as I always want to protect those I know and love. Great teaching here IHS.

sue said...

z - That is just my point. What is the time served for if people will not trust them when they are released. Of course in cases of hardened criminals they have been known to go back to crime.

Ducky's here said...

I like Anne Lamott's idea that 'Nobody gets into heaven without a letter of reference from the poor'.

Not literally true but there is certainly little biblical support for denying what is put in our path and that includes many whose lives are not reprehensibly "perfect".

I.H.S. said...

Duckey, I would agree with you and I also like the reference from the poor idea. However, you have some who will do whatever to make the poor think they are cared for, but in actuality aren't. Wow, I think I have idea for another post.


shoprat said...

If we are to be forgiven we must forgive. If we want a second (third, fourth, fifth)chance we must do the same for the penitent and struggling. Do we? I must admit that I fail a lot.

Z said...

Ducky, I'd never heard that expression and I like it, too.
I.H.S. is right...helping isn't always giving a fishing pole instead of the fish, sometimes it's destructive in the long run, isn't it. And, of course, we ALL believe that, while fishing, before catching, neighbors should give the fisherman fish while he's waiting.
If you know Anne Lamott well, let me just say we do need to help the poor, 'bird by bird..' That 'bird by bird' made an impression on me years ago and it stuck.

I.H.S. said...

Shoprat, truth is we all have failed at it, but this is what makes God so awesome; He gives us the opportunity to correct our mistakes...Daily.


Chris B said...

something keeps grabbing me by the toe and I keep hollering so it lets me go. I didn't understand what was happening and now I have nothign and am alone and no one wants me around :(