Boston strong. Those are two words we are hearing a lot as the tragedy of all those damaged and lost lives in Boston streams before our eyes and calls for the attention of our prayers. The spirit of a people are tested when all hell breaks loose, and the resolve of Bostonians to rise above the hatred and embrace the glory of life is a witness to us all of the potential in every human spirit.
So is the ugly turn of the lives of the brothers who unleashed hell on unprepared and innocent victims. That too is a witness to us all of the potential in every human spirit-including mine-and yours. From all accounts to this point, people who knew the Tsarnaev brothers would have given them their highest recommendation. The older brother, 26 year old Tamerlan, was a golden gloves boxer and a fine student. The 19 year old, Dzhokhar, was also an accomplished athlete and student. And both showed sterling character to those who thought they knew them best.
What went wrong? Two other words we are hearing a lot during the 24/7 reporting are “self radicalized”. It means that there was not an organized group that fostered this horrible turn of events, but that these two were motivated internally by an ideology, acted on their own initiative and independently together carried out their assault. Something inspired them to act, but acting was a conscious decision by each one that came from their own minds and hearts.
Hear me carefully. You and I as Jesus followers will best serve our Lord and his cause by being self radicalized. I don’t want to trivialize those two words or co-opt them to make a point. Like many other concepts this is one that first and best applies to those who follow Jesus and has been twisted in applying them to a horror such as this one.
The word radical means from the root. In John 15:5, Jesus says, “I am the vine (root) and you are the branches. Those who remain in me (following me according to my way of love) will produce much fruit.” And the fruit of which our Lord speaks are the acts of love we unleash on the world that make our world a safer and more joyful place. To be self radicalized for Christ’s sake is for each of us, by the powerful inspiration of the Holy Spirit, to be motivated to live Jesus out and to make conscious decisions from our own minds and hearts that extend the love Jesus shows us to all who are in our sphere of influence. We are to show up and show out for Christ’s sake. Another way of saying all that is to download Jesus-Get it!, embrace our heartsong (that intersection between how we are wired and what God is up to in the world)-Got it!, and sing our heartsong out loud-Go! When we do the world changes as you and I self radicalize-as we show up and show out-for Christ’s sake.
When you and I walk into the Kingdom come and are met by Jesus and all those who got there before us, the Lord and his whole entourage will not want to hear about what you and I were up to during our time on this planet that went wrong. They will be eager to hear about what you and I unleashed for Christ’s sake. What they will want to hear about is what went right.
#Boston strong #self radicalized