19 March 2006

Gut Check

Aristides, a second-century apologist for the Christian faith, wrote this to the Roman emperor Hadrian about believers in his day:

"They love one another. They never fail to help widows; they save orphans from those who would hurt them. If they have something, they give freely to the man who has nothing; if they see a stranger, they take him home, and are happy, as though he were a real brother. They don't consider themselves brothers in the usual sense, but brothers instead through the Spirit, in God."

That's nice. Unfortunately, it doesn't sound a whole lot like my life.

How about yours?


Anonymous said...

Well, from what I know of your gut, you are a spiritual brother. Perhaps the issue is that once we begin to take our eyes off ourselves, and begin to give, we realize how much more He will ask of us. God raises the river. Rather than failing to believe we can cross it, we end up believing we must,but it is so much more frightening than we ever imagined.

Anonymous said...

"They love one another". From how I have been challenged lately from reading I John is that it is only through "God's illuminating presense that offers ongoing guidance, forgiveness, and strength which equips us to live differently than the world around us" and it is the way of Jesus and the way of love which enables us to cross the river.

miller said...


i really believe a major part of this is disconnection. we are disconnected from the people all around us. we like church because it lets us feel like we are connected to a community. but there is a much larger community out there that is alone, hungry, thirsty, and cold... and we don't take care of them because we don't see them. we are isolated from their reality.

and its not just you...

i like Aristides, i think he also talks about christians who, not having the means to provide for a person's need, would fast for 2 or 3 days so they could share what they had...

makes me feel like a total wimp of a follower!