To Offend the Pharisees – Prayerful Tuesday

Matthew 5;20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

For some reason one of the major meanings of Matt 5: 20 keeps popping up on FaceBook, newspapers, lots of places.  I keep seeing cartoons and memes like these all over the place:

live like Jesus    Wm Wordsworth

Do you think someone is trying to tell us something.

To exceed righteousness of the Pharisees was to be the mirror for the light of God, which meant you don’t see the mirror only the light it reflects.  Living like Jesus is a spiritual practice.  Doing kind and loving acts for others is a spiritual practice.  We don’t have to be thanked for what we do, in fact it is best and most satisfying when such acts are not noticed by anyone other than the Divine.

I challenge each of you this week to do the random act of kindness for someone without letting them know it was you.  Or stop and give a sandwich to a homeless person on the street and simply walk away without thanks.  Give graciously of yourself without asking for anything in return.  Little things, such as smiling to a busy checkout clerk, can make someone’s world a better place to live in. Starting with little acts gives us the courage to do larger acts of justice and kindness. They are one step on the road to a life lived like Jesus.

I have only one request, PLEASE, let me know what you have done and how it made you feel.  I know that this sounds counterintuitive but it isn’t really.  What you are doing will be witnessing to others that they too can change the world, maybe not the whole world but someone’s world.  Think of it this way, if the Gospel writers hadn’t recorded what Jesus did we wouldn’t know how to live like Him. Pass on the gift so others can continue to move it forward.

Ruth Jewell, ©February 11, 2014-02-14

 

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