Encounter Jesus for New Hope

serve_the_poorThis series of posts is not an idle exercise by a 90 year old. He believes earestly.  First, to encounter Jesus is to feel hope rising. Effective change rises from the bottom up, not from the top down.  Hope springs not from those who use the sword, but from those who put the sword in its sheath;  not from those who condemn, but from those who forgive;  not from those who profit from selfish wrong doing, but from those who repent;  not from political bluster, but from Jesus-like love.

So The Old Fool calls attention of those who have ears to hear and eyes to see worth in the weak and riches in the poor, and supplies their needs;  to those who give food to the hungry, drink to the thirsty, new clothing to the poorly clad, and freedom to prisoners, and so empower the powerless. We see Jesus not only in those who are served, but also in the servers.

watershedSecond, so it is with Todd Wynward and the watershed christian communities that are forming to save the earth and its people, watershed by watershed, like leaven rising. On my first reading of Wynward’s book “Rewilding the Way” I thought that if I could I would add it to the New Testament. Now Joyce and I are reading the book aloud to each other.  The book confirmed itself to me when I read this sentence in the last paragraph of chapter 9 of the liberated that  “We are free to be fools for God“. That gave hope to me.   If you are saddened by what we human beings are doing to our earth, I recommend Wynward and his book as a continuation of the prophetic word of hope to the world.

Third, I bring you now the message of Ron Klaus. He spoke to the Men’s Fellowship of College Mennonite Church.  He and his wife have lived for 12 years in the middle east and have many Muslim friends. To go to his website click here

Klaus said he is not a militant nor a pacifist, but a pragmatist.  He wants to know what works. In his speech and on his website he reports that militarism does not work. He supports this view with a statistical account of the cost of war to the perpetrators and to the victims. The cost was calculated in innocent lives lost and dollars wasted.

helping-the-poor-people-26Klaus ended his speech at men’s fellowship and on Youtube with a surprise.  Large numbers of Moderate Muslims are defecting from their faith in several ways.  Many remain Muslim but choose to follow Jesus, the second prophet according to the Koran, and adopt his ways.  Others are converting to Christianity or are becoming atheists.

Pragmatically, what works, according to Kaus, is humanitarianism. That is another surprising encounter with Jesus that gives me hope. If you haven’t already heard Klaus speak you may click here and go to the website and look for the Youtube of Klaus speaking

 

 

About Martin Lehman

I was born 92 years ago, the son of a Mennonite pastor and organic gardener in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. At age 10 I was baptized as a member of the Marion Mennonite Church. I own the "Old Fool" moniker because I want to walk the Jesus Way even though the world and much of the church takes me as a fool for doing so. In my life I have moved from being a young conservative to an elderly radical. I tell that story in My Faith Journey posted on my website.
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