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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Source

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[April 20, 2010]   -- "Jesus said, I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."-John 14:6

For those of you who have been in worship over the past several weeks you will be very familiar with this text since I have been preaching on it since the beginning of the month. This week we will be talking about Jesus as "the life." Note that Jesus does not say he is life, rather he adds a definite article in proclaiming himself "the life." In that simple "the" there is a world of substance. What Jesus understood is that there are many lives available to us. One choice leads to another and then another and then another with the sum of those choices being the course of our lives. To wit: I was tired of Oklahoma (shockingly!) and wanted something different so I went to the University of Kansas. After a couple of vapid years I realized I needed something more in my life so I interned at my home church during the summer. Enjoying that job, some suggested seminary. After another year I agreed and made the decision to go to seminary and so on...Had I not left Oklahoma or gone to another college would I be a minister today? That is very unlikely. Rather each choice builds upon itself, shaping the course of my life.

If you think about it your lives were shaped in the same way and when Jesus says he is the life what he is reminding us of is the consequences of our choices. We are called to make choices that draw us closer to God, not further from Him. When we look at our lives and the decisions that lie ahead of us we ought to remember these words of Jesus and seek out the life, not just a life. Anyone can lead a life but those of us who seek to follow Christ are called to live the life. The life is rooted in Christ's love and teachings. The life reminds us that we are to seek fellowship with God. The life tells us to love our neighbors and our enemies and everyone in between. The life is particular, special, Christian. The life is rooted in the truth of Jesus Christ. Today, ask yourself, am I leading a life or the life? Then ponder that. I can tell you that, for me, there is no life I would rather lead than the life.

Prayer: Holy God, you are the source and root of all life. Thank you for calling me into being and for giving me this life to lead. Help me to use the time I have been given to follow you through Jesus Christ. It is in his name that I pray. Amen.

[text from file received by Phil Blackburn, First Presbyterian Church]

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