“And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments.”
I’m not usually one for reality shows, but one that has caught my attention is “Undercover Boss.” The premise of the show is that the owner of a large company goes to work incognito as a new employee in one of his or her locations. They get to see firsthand the conditions of their employees and the opinions they hold of the company and ownership. With their guard down, workers speak and act as they normally would – complaining or praising, working hard, or sloughing off. As flies on the wall, we’re in on the secret, and the touching or cringe-worthy moments we witness await the shocking reveal at the end – that their boss has been in their presence the whole time.
As Jesus walked among us, He did so as a man, but also as God. He experienced the human condition and saw first-hand the unfiltered and unguarded actions and attitudes of His creation. But the shocking reveal at the end of His earthly ministry was that in all that He endured – opposition and scheming from religious leaders, crucifixion from the Romans, and even desertion and denial from his own followers, His response was love and forgiveness. This wasn’t the sentimental ruminations of a discorporate spirit looking back at his stent on earth as a meat puppet. These were the words of God in the flesh, going through the agony of the cross while the recipients of His gift cluelessly gambled at his feet for His clothes.
The cross is crucial but we often go about our daily lives without giving it a second thought. Jesus not only walked among us 2000 years ago but His Spirit is still longing to walk and work with us today. Do we recognize and reflect God’s presence when we are at home or at work? Do we see ourselves handling our day with the Boss at our side? Or are we complaining, ignoring our mission, and squandering opportunities as though God were off somewhere else bothering with other things? When we manage our relationships, decisions, and resources without input or influence from a very present God we are denying what He did for us, ignoring His presence and gambling at His feet.
While using the HEAR method (see below) consider the following questions:
- How does this verse relate to what we’ve been reading this week with the Old Testament story of Joseph?
- Am I living my life as though I am working alongside my boss? Do I reflect to others who I represent?
- What would it take to forgive those who have hurt you, in the middle of your pain?
Highlight – what words or phrases jump out at you?
Explain – what does the passage mean?
Apply – how does the passage intersect with your life today?
Respond – how is God leading you to respond?
Jon Price, Associate Pastor