who versus how...

Reading this book "Relationships Unfiltered" by Andrew Root is really kicking my butt. It is talking about incarnational and place sharing ministry. Let me explain myself here:
Incarnational ministry is what most people believe that ministry should be. To put it simply it is to love people as Jesus loved people.
Place sharing ministry is a form of incarnational ministry, yet it takes it a step further. We see that Christ came down to earth to dwell among us and to live and breathe and talk like humans. Jesus was fully human as He is fully God. He knows what it is like to be in the depths and pits of human life, but to also go so bold to be in the joyous parts of our lives as well.
Too often, pastors or youth pastors alike, and I am just as guilty as the next, paint a picture of Jesus as this man with a nicely trimmed beard, white robe, smile, pearly white teeth, and flowing, long conditioned hair. The only time we make the image of Jesus bloody and beaten is to bring the shock factor (i.e. Mel Gibson's The Passion of The Christ)
Let me pose this question to my blog readers: Where is Jesus' body buried? If we wanted to go visit His grave, where would we go?
I will give you a minute to think about this. Google it if you need to find the location. Ready for the answer?
The answer is the Christian faith is the Christian faith because we believe that there is no tomb, or at least there is no body in it. We believe that Jesus is alive today!
I am starting to believe that all theology, ministry and faith begins with the question of Who? Who are you? Who is this Jesus of Nazareth? Who is the one who heals? Who teaches with Authority? Who is this?
In the same way, I believe that the question How? is a question of disobedience. How is God present in Jesus? How can I be good? The problem with the how question is that even if you get a right answer, theres no need to encounter the living person of Jesus Christ.
Who is the better question here. Who is a question of encounter; it's a question that assumes Jesus Christ is still living and moving in our world, continuing in ministry, and encountering our person with His person. Who is about a relationship with Jesus Christ as living and still active in the world.
The question of how on the other hand is absent from encounter. It does not need a living Jesus. It is simply a theoretical question. How can be solved on a chalkboard and then walked away from. Who demands change and transformation.

Are you sitting here, being hit by these words I am writing? Are you sitting here wondering what the heck I am talking about? All I know is, I want to know WHO Jesus Christ is and not How He lived. I want to know the change of getting to know the person of Jesus as He becomes my person. The Who question makes Jesus Christ not a logo for our religion but a living person who encounters our own person.

Did you always want to be the person in school who attracted everybody? Did you always want to have that magnetic personality that everyone clung to, thought you were the coolest person, and you knew how to be attractive to people? I want to be the type of person who does not care about the latest trends and how to be cool with students. I want to be able to invite people and students into my life as they invite me into theirs. Step by step I want to show the students my love for God and be relational with them in a way that does not have a means to an end. This is a way that God and His ministry He placed before me will thrive.

Are you searching for WHO Jesus is or HOW He was?


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