Whenever people ask me, “how are you doing” I generally have the same — and 100% truthful — answer. “I am doing OK… it depends on the day… and sometimes the moment.”
I have good moments and bad ones. Good days and less good days. Pretty much like anyone.
But one of the things that has helped me find more good moments and days has been the realization that JESUS DOESN’T CARE.
For a while, I thought he did.
But now I know he doesn’t.
And, quite frankly, that is helpful.
In the realm of things, I have come to understand that Jesus doesn’t really care that much whether I am gay or straight or whatever. He doesn’t really care where I get my paycheck or what titles are attached to my name.
He does care about how much I love him… and I think more importantly he cares about how much I know he loves me.
He cares about my relationship with him, and I think he cares about my relationships with others. He cares that I am pursuing goodness with my life: things like reconciliation and justice and feeding hungry people. He cares about me.
That’s the stuff he really cares about… yet we always get hung up on the other stuff.
I have to remember that Jesus knew I was gay long before I did. He knew and he still loved me… saved me… called me… gifted me… ordained me… and sent me. I was never hidden from Jesus — trust me, it can’t be done. He knew everything… the good, the bad and the ugly.
And so it is not precisely true to say that JESUS DOESN’T CARE — I actually think he cares about every aspect of our lives — but I do think it is fair to say that HIS PRIORITY SYSTEM is different than ours.
It is funny because we tend to get obsessed with the things I think Jesus cares less about.
An example… I love my small group. It has been great for me in terms of fellowship, grace, healing and accountability. Every week we ask each other a bunch of important accountability questions. In essence, we ask things like “did you commit any sexual sins this week?”
But you know what we don’t ask each other: “Have you welcomed any strangers into your home this week? Have you fed any hungry people? Have you clothed any naked people? Or cared for any widows or orphans or persecuted people? Have you visited any prisoners this week? Or given any money to good works this week?”
In other words, we only ask if we have AVOIDED THE BAD, and never if we were involved in CREATING GOOD.
I think this is wrong and backwards.
Because I think Jesus actually cares more about whether I lived out Matthew 25 this week and what my worship and prayer life looked like, then whether I colored outside the lines.
Now the truth is that God cares about both — and the one does influence the other. When I am engaged in selfish and self-centered behavior, believe it or not I tend to become more selfish and self-centered in every area of my life. But I think how we ask the questions of each other reveals a lot about our view of God and the world. Is the goal of life to avoid doing bad to become creators of goodness and peace and shalom?
Probably a both-and… but worth thinking about.