As I read through the Gospels, what is Jesus showing me?
What attracts His attention, what man ought I to be?
So I see how He sometimes spoke, to those Israelites called to follow,
And there I find, to my Christian mind, some challenges hard to swallow.
I see Jesus met with people, from society’s every part,
Pharisees, fishermen, Jews & Gentiles, Romans, for a start,
But the lessons He taught to His fellow Jews, who should have already known,
Is what the Lord is teaching me, and my mind is somewhat blown.
I’m seeing Jesus showing mercy and expecting His followers to do likewise,
No time had He for haughty rebuke; religious snobbery He despised,
He valued legal obedience, but said ‘Find out what these words meant’,
And quotes the prophet, and makes the point: ‘Mercy triumphs over judgement’.
The pharisees who should have worshiped Him, who followed their idea of Covenant,
Who outwardly were righteous, yet before Him would not repent,
They claimed to be holy, but were ‘holier than thou’,
Their behaviour prompted Jesus’ challenge to show compassion now,
See Jesus blessed not angry at a broken bottle of perfume,
Seeing extravagant love not parsimony in the fragrance that filled the room,
And when the children were barred from seeing Him, indignant Saviour He,
Unimpressed with His beloved crew, said ‘Let the children come unto Me’.
So what does this mean to me today, two thousand years further on?
The Bible is for now, plus then, so how do I respond?
So I meditate on the Scriptures to see what point Jesus was making,
And apply this to my daily walk, in full truth and without faking.
So I am learning that Jesus wants me to show compassion just like Him,
To be gracious to my fellow humans, not act on legalistic whim,
Learning grace words and grace actions, are better as carrot than stick,
To win those I am reaching, and bless those in my fellowship.
It’s not an easy process, I am not a perfect bloke,
But it’s Jesus calling me to change, so it’s not some silly joke.
So to show love when it is not returned, and at bad circumstances not fretting,
And allowing compassion not frustration to become my default setting.
I have not finished the journey, I have quite a way to go,
And I drop a lot of clangers, ask my family, my word they know!
But from one degree of glory to the next, is a promise in which we hope,
So pace by pace, I’ll win my race, and not reverse back down that slope.