Crazy Normal for Jesus

16Aug11

Since I first heard the phrase way back at the beginning of the summer, I’ve been slowly turning this idea around in my head…

What does it mean to be crazy normal for Jesus?

“If it seems we are crazy, it is to bring glory to God. And if we are in our right minds, it is for your benefit.”  II Corinthians 5:13, NLT

If life were a simple box (ha!) and could be neatly divided into sub-boxes, which one would you want others to assume was your home base?  Say the horizontal axis represents relationships with fellow humans, and the vertical axis represents my relationship with God.  On the left-right continuum, you have “normal” and “not-normal.”  (Go ahead.  YOU try and define “normal.”  Have fun with that.)  On the up-down line, you have “crazy” and “not-crazy,” where crazy means living life in a way that is clearly, distinctively Christ-honoring, Christ-exalting, and Christ-following.

To give you the basic idea of how this works, Mother Theresa would fit in the “crazy/not-normal” box.  She clearly desired to put Christ first, but she did so in a way that was completely not-normal.  (There’s nothing wrong with living this way, but in a short while you’ll see the point…)  Your average “Christian” sect or cult would probably also fit in the “crazy/not-normal” box – Amish and FLDS being two that come to mind.  Now take your friend the geek.  He will most likely fit into the “not-crazy/not-normal” box.  [Indemnification clause: I have nothing against geeks (we all need them, you know) and I am only repeating what was taught in one of my pre-field classes.]

Okay.  So your average Christian – the one who attends church on Sundays, prays, reads his or her Bible regularly, and gives occasionally…  Where do they fit?  Well, if they’re average, they’d go in the “not-crazy/normal” box, because there’s nothing in particular about their life that proclaims Jesus.

So then.  What gets me into that “crazy/normal” box?  And why do I so much want to be there?!

I’ll tell you what gets me there.  One word:

Obedience.

Or trust.  Faith.  Patience.  Espera. 

The thousand little decisions that make up my daily life.  Releasing control of my life to the One who has had it all along, had I been willing to see or admit that.  Viewing life – prayer – hope – the future – as an adventure, not danger to be avoided.

But why do I want to be there?  “Crazy-normal” – is that even possible?

It must be possible, because it’s the way Jesus lived.  It’s the way thousands have lived since Jesus – the everyday, unsung heroes who listen and obey, who do what God calls them to do, who count the cost and consider Jesus a worthy prize.  It must be possible because I’ve met people who live out their faith.  Who have integrated lives.  Everything touches everything else, Jesus most of all.

So.  Living crazy normal for Jesus.

What does that look like?  How does it change the way I live?  What do I do/not do?  Where do I buy groceries?  How do I get to know my neighbors?  How does it change the way I interact with people as I walk from the parking lot to the building where I work?  (It’s only a tenth of a mile, but there are lots of people – all different kinds – along my route.  I carry a Swiss Army knife for a reason…)

Lately, I’ve had to take a good, hard look at my attitude.  How does being crazy normal for Jesus change my response when things don’t go the way I’d planned?  When my idea of a timeline doesn’t work out?  When all He’s asking me to do is wait – in the unknown-ness of the future?  Sure, theoretically, I know that future is unknown.  But I much prefer to have a plan for dealing with that unknown-ness, and over the past six weeks all Jesus has asked me to do is rest in not knowing what will happen, where I’ll be, or how things will work out after a certain date this fall.  It is most uncomfortable.

But I think it’s all a part of the crazy-normal story God is writing in my life, with my life.  He’s a far better author than I ever will be, but I often have to remind myself to surrender the pencil.  And that God doesn’t always write things in stone.  And sometimes He doesn’t lead where I expect Him to lead.

Pray for me as I approach some potentially-scary crazy-normal situations in life.  I don’t know what God has in store, but I’m thrilled He’s invited me to be part of this adventure!

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One Response to “Crazy Normal for Jesus”

  1. 1 Sam

    Yes!!!


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