It would help me if Jesus weren't quite so clear.

Some time ago, a small Bible was abandon in my office. I'm not sure where it came from, and in fact, it may have joined my collection of books several offices ago, but having searched it completely for a name and finding none, I have declared it my own according to the spirit of adoption.

It is burgundy leather and just about the right size to slip into my pocket. The binding is a little loose but the whole thing feels like a well worn wallet and I just love it.

Except for page 824.

OK, I even love page 824, but that's the portion that I find most disconcerting right now. 824 might be Habbakuk or Philemon or even the maps in your Bible, but in my little adopted tome it is Matthew 5 - the sermon on the mount.

The first twelve verses of this chapter have haunted me, particularly in the last eight days. I have scoured it for loopholes or excemptions and found none available. It would appear that humility, mercy, and a hunger for righteousness are the signposts on a progressive walk with God, and any path without those markers just loops around back to the picnic shelter we call life as usual.

I'm tired of looping around on that path to find the same empty picnic table, covered with squirrel poop and the initials of those who have circled around before me. I'm tired of staring at "Billy loves Suzy" carved into the wood, knowing that had Billy loved righteousness he might not be on his way back to the bend again in the next fifteen minutes with Lila or whoever. Billy needs to read page 824 and move on.

Me too.

I dreamed last night of a large house. No, a huge house...so big that it actually encompassed what I thought were two houses. It sat on a lot up a steep hillside behind our house, in an area we used to live in. The owner of the house was getting ready to sell it, and I had the first chance to look at it. As we walked through, I marvelled at the size and the two huge garages. In the dream, I told Kelsey "Let's buy it." That's highly uncharacteristic of me, but I was ready to sell our house and buy this one on the spot.

This morning while shaving, I got to thinking about how odd it was that I was willing to jup on the chance to buy it, but also what a phenomenal house it was...in that moment, I heard an inner voice say "you can have it if you want it, but you'll have to come up higher to get it."

I'm learning what that means, and I'm also well aware that the big house isn't riches or fame, but something far more valuable. It's up there. I want to go after it.


John Evans said...

You've been chewing on that page for a while!

I've been in Mt. 5-7 a lot this year too. (I quoted parts of your 2/28 post in a sermon last April.)

You might enjoy listening to Arvo Part's "The Beatitudes". (<- rhapsody.com)

Randy Bohlender said...

John...it's been chewing on me.

katchen said...

did that burgandy small perfect pocket bible show up about a week ago? My husbands (kurt weaver) went missing about a week ago... just thought i'de check.

Randy Bohlender said...

Nope, had it for months.