One Thing!

ONE THING!

The Cost of Being a Disciple–Luke 14:25-33

25 A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, 26 “If you want to be my disciple, you must, by comparison, hate everyone else—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. 27 And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple.

28 “But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? 29 Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. 30 They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’

31 “Or what king would go to war against another king without first sitting down with his counselors to discuss whether his army of 10,000 could defeat the 20,000 soldiers marching against him? 32 And if he can’t, he will send a delegation to discuss terms of peace while the enemy is still far away. 33 So you cannot become my disciple without giving up everything you own.

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    Last night I watched movies, rather than the election, and City Slickers describes the middle-aged journey of three New Yorkers, trying to find meaning in their lives. Along the way one of them befriends the trail boss, who shares his secret to life: ONE THING!  And clarifies that each of us has to find the one thing that makes life meaningful.

    For me it is following Jesus, and his arresting words today underscore his demands: “If you want to be my disciple, you must, by comparison, hate everyone else—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life.

    And it makes sense in my heart in light of Luke 14: 15-24, the story of a man who opened his home to a great dinner party. When those who are invited refuse to come the host sends his servants out into highways and by ways to bring in the poor and the crippled, the blind and the lame. This is the story about the abolute generosity of God’s grace–God offers us everything.

    There are no requirements, none whatsoever, no ways of believing or behaving expected. God offers us everything without expectation.

    All that is expected of us–very simple, yet demanding-is to share in the prayer of the psalmnist: “The one thing I ask of the Lord–the thing I must seek most-is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. (27:4).

    To live in the “house” where all are received, loved, cared for. Where we meet and and hash out our differences without tearing each other a part; where their are no divisions by race, creed, color, economic background, sexual orientation–where we meet each other as children of the  God of Many Faces–Muslim, Christian, Buddhism, Jewish, all the rainbow of colors of expression. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

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    Fr. River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

http://www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

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