Thursday, April 21, 2016

Easter 26 Attraction

We don't know much about the physical presence of Jesus. The gospel writers didn't give us a description. We don't know if people found him physically attractive or if he had a particularly beautiful voice or if people were attracted to him in spite of lacking same.

I think of Abraham Lincoln. He wasn't a particularly handsome man and his voice has been described as high pitched and unpleasant to listen to. Still we remember him for his speeches and he attracted enough followers to become president.

In our current era, physical attractiveness is almost demanded for any shot at public notice. And that's not to say anything against physical attraction, which can be quite fun and thrilling.

But it is not the only thing that attracts us, is it?

For many of us, the gospel stories of Jesus attract us and hold us. Despite the gore of the cross and some really rather difficult teachings, Jesus continues to attract people. Some of us even find that being so attracted saves our lives.

This nobody from Galilee, who was so much a nobody that only his followers kept any record of him, still had followers who remembered and told stories and attracted more to this nobody that wound up crucified, an undignified but common means of state execution.

More than one of us has tried to walk away. More than one of us has been drawn back to this man of sorrows---and hope and promise and Good News.

A lot of us have given Jesus a bad reputation, admittedly. His attractiveness has suffered thanks to some of us. In another forum and context, I've brought this up and have been thinking about this problem.

But for today's purposes, I'm thinking about what draws me to this man and his story. My life is definitely shaped by him, despite my being unable to always adequately name what the attraction is.

I celebrate this even as I can't explain it. It has, absolutely, been a saving grace.

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