It seems to be in vogue within the modern Christianity discussion circle to choose a role within biblical stories. It may be an old practice (divino lecturio? -- okay, go ahead and laugh at my elementary Latin!) which helps us imagistically enter into the setting of the day when Christ, for instance, walks the earth. I've tried it and found it to be an excellent way to actively read the Scriptures.
A story which keeps coming up in my reading and attention is the one about Jesus' ministry and the crowds who attended to hear, listen, possibly believe, refute. It's interesting that with this story many of us moderns attest to being more like the Pharisee than the crowd that flocks. I keep reading that claim over and over again in various books. Perhaps it makes us feel more relevant, empathetic, true to our skepticism which we claim with pride. I can claim some of these feelings for sure.
However, as I read again about Jesus' ministry in Mark this morning, I think, "Why couldn't I've been part of the flock that was willing, fed, taught, ministered to?" I know that this is probably basic for some of you, and you'd think that I would have this concept tucked deep into my faith at this point in time. But, if I have, it quickly becomes dispersed from my heart into a head reaction in which I objectively put off the thought of me being led like a sheep into total hope and belief like some of these old time foks were. It seems scary and presumptious almost to claim, "Yes, Jesus would have spoken to even me, and I would have followed instead of opposed."
But, it's okay to agree to this image, because of the other side of identification. I can identify with those who need a healing touch, who have been desperately put out of sorts, who have sought for something more meaningful in their lives. Yes, a flesh and blood now representation would be amazing and curious, but, having seen, having heard, why wouldn't I have said, "Yes, I will eat your bread!" as I do attempt to now.
Hmmm.... to imagistically enter into the flock time and time again perhaps will make me less resistant even now as I subconsciously strive to be pharisaaical and separate.
Thanks, Lord, for standing before us.