The blessedness of rejection

In judgment and action those who follow Jesus will be different from the world in renouncing their property, happiness, rights, righteousness, honor, and violence. They will be offensive to the world. That is why the disciples will be persecuted for righteousness’ sake. Not recognition, but rejection will be their reward from the world for their word and deed. It is important that Jesus calls his disciples blessed, not only when they directly confess his name, but also when they suffer for a just cause. — Dietrich Bonhoeffer (from devotional)

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:10


The Kingdom Can Touch Anyone

I am working on a message about the church looking like the riders on a city bus. It draws me back to Dallas Willard and his take on the Beatitudes. The Divine Conspiracy continues to be one of the most influential books in my life.

The Beatitudes isn’t a list of things to do to become spiritual giants. It’s a list of losers. It’s a list of people the religious community in Jesus’ day had shoved aside. Jesus came proclaiming freedom for them.

While it is a joy to blog about the Kingdom blessing anyone, it is yet another thing to live that out. Too often what we really want is people exactly like us. It makes our lives so much easier.