When guano hits the fan, life is turned on its cantankerous head, or tragedy strikes, the human reaction is to hide from the chaos and nurse wounds. When I feel lost or am trying to figure out my next step I close off and focus on myself, which soon sweeps me down the toilet along with stress and self-pity. (Guess it’s a day where I’m going to reference poop a lot, sorry). I don’t take time to care about others, listen, or really involve myself in their lives. I’m detached and cold.
This week the pastor of the church we visited spoke on the importance of sharing meals as fellowship, a way to reach out to all people to build relationships. It was very interesting to see how many major events in Jesus’ life center around a meal. The miracle at the wedding, nearly every time he called a disciple, when they traveled anywhere. He ate with tax collectors, prostitutes, sinners, drunks. He fed the crowds, he offered the last supper symbolizing his body, and after the resurrection he ate with them to prove he was real. We bond over meals. We share, discuss, think, and grow as individuals and as friends over meals.
Throughout the sermon my mind was like, “Yeah sure, but not us right now. Once we get furniture, then I’ll dive into that.” But then communion came and it hit me like a sack of manure. Jesus hung out with unlikable people. And he always cared. They did not have similar interests and he always listened. Jesus never had a permanent home during his three-year ministry, but he always had time to share a meal and involve himself with people.
The second greatest commandment is to love others more than yourself. That doesn’t have an exemption clause. Jesus didn’t say to love others more than yourself when convenient, when you’re on top of life (*laughs*), when you aren’t struggling with anything in your personal life, faith, family, work, finance, health. He just says to do it. Because He did it and so much more. Little else is a better example of Christ than loving the unlovable while you’re slogging through life’s fertilizer.