Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hi my name is Katie and I'm an accidental pharisee.....Hi Katie.

First off, my apologies for my severe time lapse between posts.  I recognize when I fail to communicate what is going on in my life, I'm missing my chance to praise God for all He's done and ask for continued prayers in the work He's called me to.  Sometimes it is hard to write a blogpost when nothing stands out to share...however, I want to be a dedicated communicator of all things God puts on my heart to share and I pray with your forgiveness and God's help, I can be just that.

Secondly, so I read this book.  I had my doubts about reading the book Accidental Pharisees written by Larry Osborne because the tagline is "avoiding pride, exclusivity, and other dangers of overzealous faith."  I've never seen myself as having an "overzealous" faith (at least not the overzealous that comes to my mind).  And exlusivity...I hope I'm not an exclusive person rather an includer of all peoples.  Okay, pride...now that one and that one alone sold me.  I know I struggle with pride because when you are given the title "missionary" you can't help but easily accept the pedestal that comes with it and forget that all believers are called to missions in some shape or fashion.  So I bought the book and read it.

The result: Hi my name is Katie and I'm an accidental pharisee....Hi Katie.

The book highlighted many things I was doing that wasn't projecting an "unworthy servant" lifestyle but a "pharisee" lifestyle. I wanted praise for my obedience, I was finding pride in my "missionary" status, I was looking down on others who weren't walking with the Lord as closely as I am (or what I thought I was).  I was incredibly guilty of gift projection..thinking everyone who is a follower of Jesus should have the same calling as me, the same excitement level and be stretched the same way I am and should be just as talkative about their faith as I try to be.  However, I forgot that God is way more creative than that. Just the sentence underlined "A servant who obeys has done nothing special." whack! My obedience isn't to earn me praise..it's a "byproduct of loving Jesus!"  Lord forgive me.  Remind me that I'm an "unworthy servant; I have only done my duty." (Luke 17:10) 

Jesus spent his time preaching to thousands who would hear what he'd have to say and turn around and leave.  He wasn't preaching to the super committed, strong willed, all out servant hearted...this book reminded me his audience was to the weak-willed, uncommitted, struggling in their journey of who is God and who has He called me to be.  His disciples even argued about who would be the greatest in the Kingdom and yet He kept with them.  He didn't look down on them or judge them.  He loved them and encouraged them. He taught them how to pray, how to remain humble, how to minister to hurting people...all the while knowing they would desert him at the cross.  If Jesus had wanted to preach to only the super committed, strong willed then he would've preached to the Pharisees but we know how He felt about them and we know how they felt about Him.

I say all this to say...I need to get off my high horse.  I need to love the people God puts in my path right where they are at, despite their background, commitment level, or passion for what I think they should be passionate about. 

Lord I pray that I can say instead, "Hi my name is Katie and I'm an unworthy servant...Praise the Lord!"