Monday, August 15, 2011

Speaking of The Hokey Pokey...

"You yourselves are my witnesses that I said, 'I am not the Messiah, but I have been sent ahead of him...'  For this reason my joy has been fulfilled.  He must increase, but I must decrease."
(John 3:28,30)

Actors, Athletes, Politicians, Clergy... we all have an inherent risk in our professions.  The risk is to fall into the seductive trap of adulation, recognition, self-absorption and arrogance.  Many of us thrive in the spotlight.  That's not necessarily bad, but when our ego grows along with the attention, the danger is we lose a firm grip on humility.

John the Baptist knew this.  He'd garnered a large following with his "dunking ministry" in the Jordan River.  His own disciples get very concerned when they saw the hoards of people following Jesus (and his "dunking ministry!").  John reminded them that he himself never claimed to be the Messiah, so he was totally fine with Jesus getting all the attention.  "He must increase, but I must decrease," John said.

I can't speak for the other aforementioned professions, but I know how challenging it is for us clergy.  It's so easy to crave the attention and adulation of the people in our churches.  But it's so not about us.  Are we pointing people to Jesus?  Because, to borrow a phrase from "The Hokey Pokey," that's what it's all about!

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