|My favorite novel, as a young person, was In His Steps, written by Charles Sheldon. The premise of this novel is simple. A group of people in the church made a spiritual pact that before doing or saying anything they would preface it by asking the probing question, "What would Jesus do?" (WWJD).|
If you have read that novel, you know this simple query put everyone's life in jeopardy. Everyone, that is, who was serious about it.
Some want enough religion to keep from getting the real thing but not enough to change or inconvenience their lifestyle. Not everyone is serious about his or her religious life.
Many people want to go to heaven but they want to do it their way and in their own good time. If these people treated their job the same way they treat God, they would not have a job for long.
It's a good question: What would Jesus do? I have thought a lot about it myself and must confess it has done some good in my direction. Now, whenever I see those initials WWJD it gives me some pause to think about what I am doing. And, if you have to know, I've had to not do some things I had projected.
Recently, in light of the WWJD resurgence, I have seen bracelets, and jewelry and other paraphernalia with these initials, reminding people of the message. I'm all for anything that will encourage people to do the right thing, regardless of any inconvenience.
I think, however, that some people have taken a left when the road map indicated a right.
For example: Someone wrote a book on What Would Jesus Eat? I did not read the book but I'm guessing he ate a lot of fish but absolutely no pizza, let alone a nice slice of New York-style cheesecake.
Often I have wondered how our Lord survived without cheesecake. Don't tell anyone, but I have a sneaking suspicion he would have enjoyed a slice, as well as me.
Some advertising genius got on the wagon and struck up the band with "What would Jesus drive?" I could be way out of line here but I'm thinking Jesus drove a donkey, if you can drive a donkey.
One of the last things he did was to ride a donkey into the city of Jerusalem. Apart from the lowly donkey, Jesus wore out a lot of sandal leather.
If I'm going to "drive what Jesus drove," I will have to turn my car in for a low mileage donkey. Donkeys are great on gas but it is the post-donkey problem that keeps piling up.
I know what the Mistress of the Parsonage would say (and do) if I brought a donkey home some evening. Mr. Donkey and Yours Truly would be traveling companions, to be sure.
The question burning in my mind during these pre-election days is simply; "Whom would Jesus vote for" (WWJV) in the upcoming elections?
Forgotten are all those hanging chads and such, associated with the election of 2000. My mind is in a new direction; whom would Jesus vote for in November?
Religion has played an important role in the politicking of late. Every politician, these days, speaks of the importance of personal faith in an appeal to religious groups. If you ask me, I've never seen a politician who could not do with a good dose of religion.
Even in Pennsylvania, politicians are chasing the Amish vote. Now, I ask you, what in the world does a politician of the 21st century have to offer the Amish living in the 18th century?
The Amish have their own schools. They take care of each other and do not need a government health plan. And there is no unemployment among these sturdy people of the earth. They go out of their way to keep the government out of their lives.
Therefore, what does a politician have to offer these quaint people ó free axle grease for their buggy wheels?
Probably, the most important point in this discussion is what political candidate has anything they can offer Jesus? What promise could they ever make that would in any way entice Him to cast a glance their way, let alone a vote.
A problem the politician faces is simply: Jesus demands complete and absolute honesty in every person ó all the time. For a candidate to make some promise merely to entice a voter would be repulsive to Jesus.
Jesus can see through every promise and every person.
Every candidate for public office knows in his or her heart they cannot deliver on most of their promises. This inability to deliver does not in any regard stop the flow of smooth-as-butter promises.
From the New Testament, Jesus established some priorities:
* Honesty to the point of personal harm.
* Preferring the other to himself.
* Helping the poor and unfortunate.
Fortunately, Jesus does not vote. Rather, he invites people to come to Him for rest.
An Old Testament scripture illustrates this truth. "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool." (Isaiah 1:18 KJV.)
What politician offers forgiveness of sins? Jesus said, "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28 KJV.)
St. Augustine hit it right when he said, "Thou, O Lord, has created us for Thyself and we are restless until we rest fully in Thee."
About the Author
Rev. James L. Snyder is an award winning author and popular columnist living with his wife in Ocala, FL.
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