Last Sunday we picked up the story of Jesus at the street corner of Witness and Follower. John’s account gives detail to the first people who pulled up to this intersection, so to speak. Noticeably present in these early encounters was this looming ideal of trust – for the Follower (trusting that Jesus was who He said he was – even amidst skepticism!) and for the Witness (God trusting his story to be told and his image to be accurately represented by humans). Both distinctions are synonymous and cannot exist a part from each other. From a birds eye view they look like a trail, a road map of sorts, housed in human form . And where does it lead? To Jesus himself.
“Powerlessness and humility in the spiritual life do not refer to people who have no spine and who let everyone else make decisions for them. They refer to people who are so deeply in love with Jesus that they are ready to follow him wherever he guides them, always trusting that, with him, they will find life and find it abundantly.” (Nouwen )
“Intelligent skepticism is not condemned, for it is the necessary balance which preserves the distinction between genuine faith and foolish credulity. It is part of what it means to ‘walk in the light’.” (Newbigin)
“The work of Jesus was not a new set of ideals or principles to merely reform or even revolutionize society, but the establishment of a new community, a people that embodied forgiveness, sharing and self-sacrificing love in its rituals and discipline. In that sense, the visible church is not to be the bearer of Christ’s message, but to be the message.” (Hauerwas)