Jesus Calls You To Be Eccentric

Matthew 3:1-12
In those days John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea, proclaiming, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.’ This is the one of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke when he said,
‘The voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
“Prepare the way of the Lord,
   make his paths straight.” 
Now John wore clothing of camel’s hair with a leather belt around his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then the people of Jerusalem and all Judea were going out to him, and all the region along the Jordan, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.
 But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, ‘You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit worthy of repentance. Do not presume to say to yourselves, “We have Abraham as our ancestor”; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the axe is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
 ‘I baptize you with water for repentance, but one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing-fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing-floor and will gather his wheat into the granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.’

A lot of changes have occurred since I last blogged...not the least of which being my Ordination to the Transitional Diaconate, my graduation from Sewanee: The University of the South, moving back to Jackson, MS, and starting my curacy at St. Columb's Episcopal Church. A lot of changes in a short amount of time. 

I have always been such a creature of habit, especially when it comes to what I wear. If you have been around me for any length of time, you know I have my stints of favorite shirts, shoes, and sometimes pants. When I was in college I loved to wear these lovely green sweat pants. I rocked them all the time - I once even wore them to a fraternity party. I didn't care, even when a cute boy pointed out that I was pretty bold to wear them. Actually, I still love them. At this moment they are in my closet, but the ankle elastic has dry rotted. If I thought I could mend them, I would. 

There have been other items of clothing along the way. Most recently, seminary found me donning a shirt which says "Relax, I Am Hilarious." My classmates at Sewanee just were not catching on to my humor. So, Mom sent me the shirt and it "broke the ice" a bit. 

And now, I find myself having to wear a new uniform...clericals. 

I am a little embarrassed to admit that when I went to seminary I had not given much thought to the fact that clericals would be my new uniform. Nor did I know all the rules that apply. For instance, I had no idea that Bishops wore purple/pink, and wearing such was a no no for anyone else. I remember wearing a pink skirt at a cookout a few weeks into my first year of seminary, and people laughed at me. I was clueless.

Now, I know the rules. Trust me when I tell you there have been a number of articles and books written in devotion to clergy wear. Plus, everyone has an opinion on how, and why, and where you should wear them. But, what I have discovered is that learning to wear the clericals is just an outward and visible sign of growing into the work of ministry. 

Some days I feel like John the Baptist. Not because people are flocking to me for repentance and baptism, but because I apparently look wildly out of place. I get lots of looks. I have also been asked if I am a Nun, a lot. 

The thing is, I have been through this before, kind of - I can't tell you how many times I went to the jail to introduce myself to clients, and after looking me over they would say: "YOU are my lawyer? If you will get me out of here, I promise I will get a paid lawyer." This face clearly invokes trust, huh? 

But now, I get this same sort of reaction everywhere. In fact, I met a guy recently who told me he sees me in Whole Foods all the time. I do go to Whole Foods a lot, but I could not recall the people I see in friend Kate tells me these are things that only happen to me, but I think my new uniform doesn't help. It is a little ironic because I have been feeling really vanilla the last few weeks. Honestly, I feel like I need to be more eccentric, and that I need more eccentric people in my life. My boss thinks I am having an existential crisis.

The description of John the Baptist here in the Gospel of Matthew reminds me that the Jesus Movement is eccentric. Really, it is truly counter-cultural. And, we are all called to proclaim this counter-cultural way of Jesus in all that we do. No matter what uniform you wear, we are called to ministry - to reconcile all people to God and each other. 

What does this mean? It means that when you are in your lawyer uniform visiting a client wearing an orange jumpsuit at the jail, you still treat them like a human who deserves dignity. It means that when you are teaching dance to children, you take just as much time with the uncoordinated kid as you do the kid who has great potential to be famous. It means that whatever uniform we wear, in whatever profession we find ourselves, we proclaim that Jesus' love and mercy and justice knows no limits. It means we, too, are to prepare the way of the Lord. It means, be eccentric.


Rebecca Beers said…
Love you Bradshaw! Proud to be one of your more eccentric friends . . . RIP green sweatpants with elastic around the ankle.
Anonymous said…
Betty Jo, Please blog again.
Gabriel Zatt said…
Get your free Steam Gift Card Codes at It really works!
hitaakademi said…
Ankara merkezli sanal gerçeklik oyun merkezi kurulum hizmetleri
VR CAFE Türkiye'de hizmet ve faaliyetlerini sürdürmektedir.
hitaakademi said…

Ankara'da profesyonel ağda hizmeti
ankara erkek agda hizmette
sinir tanimiyor...
hitaakademi said…
Ankara'da profesyonel ağda hizmeti
ankara erkek agda hizmette
sinir tanimiyor...
Mir Baseerat said…
We are here to help you out with the whole procedure to Download Microsoft online, We not only fix your MS office setup related issues but will guide with how to get started with your new Office 2016 product once it get installed successfully. So why are you waiting for just ask whatever question you have via live chat online. visit officecom/setup More Info Call Now 1 855 869 6776
'the more you shall honor Me,
the more I shall bless you'
-the Infant Jesus of Prague

Jesus, have mercy on our souls.
pham Jany said…
nice blog

House design company, beautiful villa design in Vietnam

 You are looking for:

thiet ke biet thu co dien

thiet ke nha dep hien dai

thiet ke biet thu

thiet ke xay dung nha dep
Goodman12 said…
Thank you for sharing valuable information.


Unknown said…
เทคนิคแทงบอลออนไลน์ให้ได้เงินรวดเร็วแบบง่ายๆ กับ SBOBET

ในปัจจุบันนี้การเล่นพนันบอลไม่ใช่เรื่องยากอีกต่อไปเบื่อไหมกับการแทงบอลแบบเดิมๆ ที่จะต้องเดินทางออกไปส่งผลที่โต๊ะทั้งเสี่ยงและเสียเวลา แต่ตอนนี้ไม่จำต้องต้องเดินออกไปแทงถึงโต๊ะบอลอีกแล้ว เพราะท่านสามารถที่จะเล่นได้ผ่านทางเว็บไซต์ sbobet ได้ง่ายๆ

ซึ่งวิธีการเล่นก็ง่ายแสนง่ายไม่จำเป็นจะต้องเสี่ยวออกไปถึงโต๊ะบอลเล่นสบายๆ อยู่ที่บ้านนั่งตากแอร์เย็นๆ แถมยังมีถ่ายทอดสดทุกคู่การแข่งขัน ระบบภาพและเสียงคมชัดในระดับ HD ซึ่งได้ถูกพัฒนามาเป็นอย่างดีมีความเสถียรสูงทำให้ดูได้อย่างไหลเลื่อนไม่มีสะดุด โดยไม่ต้องเสียงค่าใช่จ่ายใดๆ ทั้งสิ้นท่านสามารถเลือกดูคู่การแข่งขันได้ตลอด 24 ชั่วโมง เท่านี้ยังไม่พอยังมีอัตราการต่อรองและการจ่ายที่สูงมาพร้อมกับโปรโมชั่นสุดคุ้ม ที่จะทำให้ท่านได้รับเงินที่มากกว่าการแทงบอลทั่วไปอย่างแน่นอน ลืมไปได้เล่นกับการแทงบอลแบบเดิมๆ นั้นมาดูกันว่าเทคนิคแทงบอลออนไลน์ที่จะทำเงินให้ท่านนั้นมีอะไรกันบ้าง

dokdok said…
มาเด้ เป็นอย่างไร? เป็นส่วนประกอบของสารสกัดที่ได้จากธรรมชาติมีทั้งยังวิตามินรวม แร่ เอนเหล้าองุ่นแล้วก็เชลล์บรรเทา
เป็นศาสตร์การบำบัดที่มีต้นกำเนิดมาจาก สหพันธ์สาธารณรัฐเยอรมนี โดยกานศึกษาค้นพบของหมอ ซามุเอลฮาเนมัน แก่มากยิ่งกว่า 200
ปีโดยมีวิธีการบรรเทาว่า (ใช้สิ่งที่คล้ายคลึงกันมารักษาสิ่งที่คล้ายคลึงกัน) หรือการนำเอาสารที่เป็นต้นเหตุของอาการนั้นๆ

มาเด้ หน้าใส
ฉีดมาเด้ ที่ไหนดี

Popular Posts