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Its 3 in the morning. Just got woken up by dreaming that my flatmate was trying to wake me up. My first thought was that i’d slept through my alarm, but that particular terror quickly subsided. The whole experience was weird though, cos it seemed so… audible. I’m not claiming a Samuel moment by any means, here, but experientially it felt pretty much like i imagine that did. Which was disconcerting. So obviously i awaited further missives from on high.

These were not particularly forthcoming, except that i got to thinking about this evening just gone, and i thought some stuff that seemed worth writing down, so here it is.

I spent the evening being hospitalised by my good friend and ex housemate, Docherty Duncan*, and his Bonnie and Buxom** wife, MM. It was great to see them and benefit from the richness of their company. I learnt the difference between a monk*** and a friar. I almost learnt some ancient greek. I also learnt a bit about myself, having thought about some stuff that happened in the course of the evening. You see, it occurred to me that whilst everyone in the room, as it happens, would certainly claim that “being like Jesus” is pretty much their fundamental goal in life, last night this aim produced wildly differing results in each person. And that got me thinking.

I tend to get some stick for regularly drinking my nice cup of tea from a “Wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana” memorabilia type mug. The mug has some significance for me, but that’s another story. The reason i bring it up is Prince Charles’ famous quote about love. Whatever that means. Amongst other things, it was at least a very honest remark. And i think its often applicable to my clumsy attempts to be like Jesus. Whatever that means.

I use the phrase “being like Jesus” a lot, and i’m realising now, i’m not always sure what it means. Or at least, i realise i’ve only grasped a tiny amount of what it could and should mean.

Recently in my thinking, i’ve been focusing on the outrageousness of Jesus. Jesus the radical. Jesus the guy who turns your world upside down. Jesus the guy who says what you’re not allowed to say, talks to who you’re not allowed to talk to, and pisses off all the people who you’re not allowed to piss off. And some of that thinking came out in my actions last night. No bad thing. Except that MM once again reminded me that Jesus is also all about gentleness and kindness and sensitivity. If you asked MM what “being like Jesus” is all about i’d hazard a guess that she’d talk about his incredible purity. And she’d be right to do so. Because it’s not a choice between outrageous and pure, or shocking and gentle.

The answer, as is so often the case in these matters, is not one thing or the other. Its both. Jesus is outrageously pure. He is shockingly gentle. I reckon its good that the guy we are entrusting everything to turns out to be deeper than our first glance revealed.

Sometimes in my eagerness to be outrageous, i forget that its all about outrageous love – for forgetting that tonight, i owe MM an apology. Sorry MM. And whilst i still hold that its probably not genuine Christian fellowship until every guy in the room has referenced some kind of sex toy at least once in the conversation, its definitely not Christian fellowship if my attitude is one of self-obsession and self-importance. Its good to be reminded that being provocative as an end in itself is not “being like Jesus” at all. Its good to have friends whose example keeps you straight and opens your eyes to what’s missing in your thoughts and actions. Which is a pretty good working definition of prophecy, when you think about it. So maybe this was a Samuel moment, after all.

*Names have been changed to protect the guilty.
**This phrase doesn’t mean what you probably think it does, but MM qualifies either way.
***Random aside: If you become the disciple of a monk, does that make you a monkee?

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4 Comments

  1. The disciple of a monk is either a monko or a monkette, depending on their gender. It’s all very confusing and to do with the word ‘monk’ originally being made up by a drunk Belgian.

  2. What did Charlie say about love?
    Why are you moderating my comments?
    I’m far too lovely to ever say or do anything inappropriate.
    Ever

  3. Not bad going for a first proper entry. And an eagerness to outrage defeats the purpose of true outrageousosity. Enjoying the results is still worthy though.

    As for the Jesus bit, I reckon you’re more or less hitting the nail on the head – everybody’s going to have their own preferred bits – nice legs et c. – and the body wouldn’t be whole without the whole gamut, but when somebody starts to concentrate on being leggy, rather than trying to have legs like Jesus’s legs, then things have gang awry.

    Man, it’s late – did that make sense?

  4. yeah, but “hey, hey, we’re the munkos” just doesn’t have the same ring to it, now does it?

    Moderating now fixed. Charlie was asked if he loved his then fiancee Diana, and replied “yes… whatever love means”

    Thanks. Yep – you’re saying being all legs and no trousers will leave you somewhat exposed, but being all trousers and no legs just doesn’t stand up, right?


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