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Jesus & His Ragtag Band

We all long for and need community. We tend to look for it with those we naturally

gravitate towards, those who are like ourselves, hold the same interests, think the

same way, have the same views etc. We look for the natural click. It makes sense.

Who needs extra drama in their life from trying to force a friendship that’s not natu-

ral and maybe even rubs us the wrong way sometimes?

In Mark 3:13 - 20 we read about the community Jesus began to form around Him-

self when He calls the 12 disciples.

  • Peter and Andrew were brothers, and most likely competing fishermen with another family of fishermen, James and John.

  • Peter is portrayed as a strong personality who was argumentative and put his foot in his mouth.

  • James and John were nicknamed "Sons of Thunder", meaning they had tempers.

  • Matthew, a tax collector would have been considered a traitor for being a part of the unjust system of Roman rule over the Jewish people.

  • Simon was a Zealot, a religious extremist. Zealots wanted to overthrow the Roman Empire with violence if necessary.

  • Thomas refused to believe Jesus until he touches His wounds

  • Judas betrays Jesus.

We don’t know as much about some of the others, but you get a glimpse of the tension that was likely present at times among such a diverse, even oppositional group of folks.

This isn’t exactly the kind of team one would expect to change the world. Why did

Jesus select such a diverse group to be his inner circle of followers? Wouldn’t it

have been easier to pick a group of people that were more similarly aligned in per-

sonality and views? What was he thinking?

In following Jesus, the disciples were shaped by His love and humility, learned the the way of the kingdom and were united and empowered by His Spirit after His resurrection. In following Jesus and being loved and taught by Him and empowered by His Spirit, they learned to love one another. Transformational community begins when we learn how to love people right in front of us. This begins with humility. It’s because of Jesus’ humility that we have community with God.

Pride covers up our own weaknesses, is impatient with others weaknesses, defen-

sive towards correction and seeks attention. Humility, on the other hand, admits

our own weaknesses and is patient with the weakness of others. It is open to

correction, and points the spotlight on others. Pride prioritizes being right at any cost.

Humility values the honor and dignity of the person and our relationship with them

over our opinion or position. We of course will have opinions and positions on is-

sues, but humility looks beyond position or opinion to identify the underlying inter-

ests. Pride assumes our rightness, humility evaluates our interests to see if they

align with God’s. Humility prioritizes being right with God over being right on an

issue. Pride holds grudges. Humility forgives. Pride hinders God’s grace from work-

ing in us and through us, humility opens us up to God’s truth and love and makes us

conduits for His love to be shown to the world.

My vision for FBC Holden is that we will grow deeper together as a transformational

community, as we are transformed by Christ, and then together, we will transform

the community around us. Let’s continue to grow in actively loving one another

with humility.



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