Keeping Up with the Jones’

Ever heard the phrase “keeping up with the Joneses”? I’m not sure how to correctly spell Jones-es. But my guess is that the Jones’ do and would correct my spelling…

Because isn’t that the point about that phrase? That around us are these people with perfect put together lives, lawns, children, and even grammar? These are the people who are always smiling and life seems to just go well for them. And secretly, many of us try to keep up with them, or just hope our lives would be like them. While this is a struggle for many of us on a personal level, it becomes even more difficult on a spiritual level.

Because I believe we often base our hope for God’s involvement in our lives, on our present reality. Meaning that if our lives are a bit of a mess we don’t expect God to change things that much. While we might not outwardly say it, we feel it. We think that God might answer the prayer of the Jones’ because they pray everyday, they give to the church, their kids are perfect, and their lives are put together. Sure God would show up in their always perfectly clean life, but it is less likely in our messy lives.

After many years of listening, I hear these thoughts so often. They are objections to God’s involvement in our lives because… “I did this….” “I don’t deserve God because…” “That might work for some but I’m just…”

So we don’t hope, we don’t expect God to show up, and we struggle. We know that God answers prayers for parking spaces for the Jones’ but when we’re drowning in debt he seems far away.

Well this Sunday I want to challenge that thought. I want to challenge that belief because it’s not true, and it’s not biblical. This Sunday I want to discover how God loves to show up in a mess, and we’ll discover how in the midst of family drama, division, hurt feelings, rejection, and mess, Jesus shows up. I think that’s worth discovering because if your at all like me, my life has some mess in it. But the beautiful thing is that is exactly where Jesus wants to show up…

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