In seeking to go HD when it comes to Jesus, here are some things that impress me and draw me further to go and check him out.

First, Jesus was not in to himself.  He didn’t promote himself or strut his stuff.   He was not a loud-mouthed TV commercial type, and he didn’t drag others down to look good.

YET, if anyone had something to talk about he did.  He was some awesome person, capable of out of this world stuff (see Mt. 4:23-24).  He simply allowed his actions to speak for him.

Second, Jesus was approachable.  He was interested in people like you and me, willing to listen, understanding how it is with people.  The most troubled, confused, bound, burdened, burned out, the so-called or self-proclaimed failures and losers (in part or completely)—whoever was welcomed.  You could be yourself and not feel condemned by his responses or reactions.

YET, Jesus stood for something, believed in something, or SOMEONE.  He represented a different way of life, unlike other ways, and felt so strongly about this way, he was willing to die for it, and for others, even if they never followed him.

[In history there have been many who killed for what they believed, but few who gave their lives, sacrificing self for what they believed and in so doing seemed to allow others—like the religious and civil authorities, and the unseen powers—to ”win.”]

Third, Jesus welcomes people just as they are.  They could be themselves, but he was and is on the move. He’s going somewhere.  To be with him—just as you are—means you cannot remain as you are or where you are.  He invites us to walk with him, and to walk into a new way of being, of living, of experiencing our humanity.

YET, there is no coercion, no sense of external pressure compelling you to do what you don’t want to do.  You come, begin to walk, and find yourself wanting to know, see, feel, experience more.  It’s like a taste of something so good that you’ve got to have more, or like seeing something so beautiful that you simply must have another look, even if it’s not convenient or costs you to do so. 

Fourth, Jesus treats everyone the same, in that all are welcome.  No one is turned away, which forces all people to face the selfishness and pride within their own hearts.  You find yourself in the company of Jesus and it’s not just “Jesus and me,” but there are all these other folks who have also been welcomed, folks that are not like you at all, some of whom are so unlike you that you would never ever desire to be in their company, but there you are.   And, you must choose between being with Jesus along with all the other strange people he attracts, or hanging on to your people-prejudices and preferences and going it alone.

YET, Jesus treats everyone differently.  He treats each one just as each one needs and deep-down really wants (though this realization usually comes only later), so that each is valued, loved, challenged, corrected, and changed just the way they most needed and wanted (this realization also usually comes only later).  Jesus doesn’t jam anyone into another’s mold!

I am absolutely intrigued by Jesus in HD.  I do not know anyone else who is like this, who can compare.  I am drawn, pulled into the Jesus-way.  I think the world would be so much better if those of us who claim to know about Jesus could follow him in such HD!

Published by David Kendall

Reverend David W. Kendall, an ordained elder in the Great Plains Conference, was elected to the office of bishop of the Free Methodist Church in May 2005. He serves as overseer of East Michigan, Gateway, Great Plains, Mid-America, North Central, North Michigan, Ohio, Southern Michigan, Wabash, African Area Annual Conferences; and Coordinator of oversight for the World Ministries Center.

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