The full picture

By Dave Henning / December 8, 2013

“But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.” -John 2: 24-25

Stephen Mansfield comments on this passage in Chapter 3 of Healing Your Church Hurt, noting that the word entrust comes from the root of the word that means “faith”.  Thus the passage indicates that Jesus didn’t base His life, His sense of self, or His sense of purpose on what others said about Him- good or bad.  Yet, the author points out that Jesus loved those He interacted with because He had no illusions about what they could be (emphasis mine).  We, Mr. Mansfield emphasizes, should do no less:

“For whatever else you believe about the circumstances  that have hurt you . . . you must admit that much of your hurt is your astonished horror that people you trusted could be so cruel.  True?  And you must own your own foolishness in over-trusting, over-lauding, and over-resting your sense of God and self on what mere human beings promised to do.”

No matter what harm was intended through our ministry downsizing or vocation loss, Stephen asserts that we need to step behind it to see the full picture- that we’re all sinful.  If we allow this understanding to crack the wall of our hatred and defenses, we’ll be able to love those we can’t trust and experience God’s peace, which Stephen says “happens when you come home to yourself and find that God is already there.”

Today’s question: How does admitting our own sinful response start us on the road to freedom, love, and peace in Christ?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Finding life in the desert”

About the author

Dave Henning

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