Tag Archives: Jesus

Nobody Wants Jesus

I wrote this at Easter time a couple of years ago.  I still like some of it, but I now wish to rewrite it.

Nobody wants Jesus

Nobody wants Jesus to come.

Oh, we all say we do.

But we mean the Jesus

who looks like us,

who talks like us,

who carries our very own prejudices

in his heart.


We don’t want the Jesus

Who, like His brother Thomas,

plunges His finger

into gaping wounds,

the ones in our sides.

That Jesus

asks too much.


We don’t want the Jesus

Who has looked

into the eyes

of the wild God,

The Holy Mystery,

Who screams,” Love!”

from every rooftop.


We don’t want the Jesus

Who didn’t care for empty piety,

Who desired more than sacrifice,

Who commanded mercy,

Who prayed for enemies,

Who loved the outcast–

The Beloved, enfleshed.


With followers

like us,

it’s a wonder

He ever had to flee to the desert

for solitude.



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At the Gates of the City

A Rabbi came to the prophet Elijah and asked, “Tell me, when will the Messiah come?” The reply, “Go ask him yourself,” surprised the Rabbi. “Where is he?” he asked. “He’s sitting at the gates of the city,” Elijah said. “But how will I know which one he is?” the Rabbi inquired.

“He is sitting among the poor, covered with wounds. The others unbind all of their wounds all at one time and then bind them up again; but he unbinds his wounds one at a time and then binds that wound up again. He says to himself, ‘Perhaps I shall be needed and I must always be ready.'”

–Henri Nouwen (via Molly Baskette)

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All Flame

I love this passage from Cynthia Bourgeault‘s book, The Wisdom Jesus.

Would it be possible for us, too, to “become all flame?” Could our own lives become such a perfect fusion of infinite love and finite form that light would pour from our being as an actual physical radiance? I have indeed seen this light in more than a few realized masters toward the end of their earthly journeys; it is the fully revealed mystery of human life lived as a conscious sacrament. How we get there is the secret Jesus will unfold for us through the course of his own consciously sacramental life. But our first step in joining him on this journey is to recognize that his incarnation is not about fall, guilt, or blame, but about goodness, solidarity, and our own intimate participation in the mystery of love at the heart of all creation. (pp. 102-103)

Goodness, solidarity, intimate participation in the mystery of love.  This approach is so much more full and rich than the old-fashioned, unworthy sinners approach.  And I think it is what Jesus actually meant in his teachings.

Moses & Bush Icon Sinai c12th century

The Burning Bush

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