That’s the funny thing about who Jesus has to be if he’s who we hope he is: He has to be able to out-love us. That means the scandalous dinner invite isn’t just for us, it’s for the people we despise, for those we disagree with, for everyone who pushes our buttons and boils our blood and twists our insides — and we have to be on board with that. Not only do we need to accept the fact that the table is wide open, but we have to be at the ready with a chair and an extra setting for those we find it most challenging to welcome. If you’re at all like me, you’ve spent a good deal of time and effort crafting what you believe is a compelling, air-tight case against breaking bread with certain people because of the message that would send to them. We don’t want people whose religion or politics or behavior are adversarial to ours to “get away with it” by giving them proximity or showing them generosity, and that self-righteousness feels good until we realize that someone somewhere is asking Jesus why he sits with us.
— John Pavlovitz, Rise, p. 18-19
Photo: Bull Run Regional Park, Virginia, April 7, 2023