2 And everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was bitter in soul, gathered to him. And he became commander over them. And there were with him about four hundred men.(1 Sam. 22:2, ESV)
If there is anything I could tell anyone at any time it is this: your discontent is welcome at our church.
The questions. The searching. The “wanting to be real.” All of it.
David, as a leader, gathered around some pretty hard-nosed characters but he then directed them in their bitterness toward something greater.
This is the Kingdom of God as well.
Some read the Sermon on the Mount opening as a list of “things to do” or “things to be.” We call it the “Beatitudes.”
Dallas Willard in his book The Divine Conspiracy flipped my thinking on this. It’s not about what to achieve. Jesus is giving a list of “losers” in the current culture that are WELCOME in the Kingdom of God. Just come in and explore what the Kingdom is about.
Poor. Meek. Downtrodden. Beat up. Distressed. Bitter.
Come HERE. Explore the Kingdom. Listen. Understand. Find fresh water. Find some healing.
Bring your questions. Bring your attitude. Just know that the “attitude” you throw around will get banged up by others throwing their “attitudes” around. 😉
The bitter. The questioning. The hurting. The imperfect.