Change of heart, life — every day
Published 9:18 am Thursday, February 23, 2017
I used to carry change around in my pocket. I started each day with one dollar in coins, able to make change for any amount: three quarters, a dime, two nickels, five pennies. The least coins, with the most flexibility. I used to need them. Now they collect dust in my drawer.
How we pay for things has gone through dramatic changes in the past few years. Now we have pay-at-the-pump gas, we do self-check-out groceries and we order online.
We used to hand the cashier our credit card, now we swipe it or insert our “chip” ourselves. I may no longer see the cash change hands, but things still aren’t free. Even with all these changes, I still have to invest myself somehow to get what I need.
The life of faith has gone through great changes in recent years as well. There are more study bibles and translations, more books and devotionals, there are online courses and Bible-reading plans, there are even worship services available “on-demand” and ways to contribute online. There are new ways to encounter and live a life of faith, but it still is all about relationship. Even with all these changes, I still have to respond to God. To relate to God, I still have to offer myself as partner-disciple in what God is doing in the world. Since the book of Genesis and the first story of Adam, God’s co-steward of all things, this remains the same.
Jesus of Nazareth taught that we are to love God with our whole being, and to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. This hasn’t changed. Nor was it just instruction for his followers who strive to be reflections of him and “Christ-like.”
This was age-old instruction for the Jewish people, as the essence of all the Law and the Prophets. This was global wisdom intended for all people. Relate to God in awe and appreciation, and relate to others with abiding grace. This is the timeless intent of how we are meant to live each day.
“Give us this day our daily bread…” (Matthew 6:11, Luke 11:3) Jesus taught his disciples to look to God for what they needed each day: bread, forgiveness and leadership. He taught them what they needed to offer: relationship with others, their will to follow and their need for help.
The whole point? Change. Of heart. Of life. Every day.