In his book, Crazy Christians: A Call to Follow Jesus, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry challenges us to be crazy enough to love like Jesus, to give like Jesus, to forgive like Jesus, to do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with God― like Jesus. The book is a collection of his addresses delivered at the Diocesan conventions of the Diocese of North Carolina. The Epiphany study covers five weeks.
We need some Christians who are as crazy as the Lord. Crazy enough to love like Jesus, to give like Jesus, to forgive like Jesus, to do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with God― like Jesus.
Read the Passion and Resurrection narrative in Matthew 27-28 to see how Mary demonstrates what it means to be crazy for Jesus within this drama.
Curry speaks of the dream of a God who seeks “reconciliation, reunion, and communion” between all of us whom he created in his image.
As part of being a crazy Christian in the world today, these two chapters lay out that our support lies in the reciprocal nature of the two-fold commandment of love. Ultimately, it is God and our neighbor who return that love and support us in our walk.
Curry points out that discipleship is more than simply following Jesus with your feet but is intrinsically holistic. Discipleship is about becoming one with the one we follow. In becoming like Jesus, all other issues fall into place.
A mountain, in the biblical narrative, is that place where the firmament between the heavens and the earth becomes thin and translucent. It is where we encounter the Father, learn from the Son, and are renewed and transformed by the Spirit. Where is your mountain?
Curry reminds us that, on this side of the resurrection, we will be tossed as if on a wild and restless sea. Think through how we are called to follow Jesus despite (and often because of) the restlessness and controversies of the present age.
The Church does not begin with Love or Justice or Good Works, rather our journey must begin with a deepened relationship with God and each other in Christ. For only beginning with a God who humbles himself in the Incarnation and Death does the world appear upside down.
What does it mean to have a church that draws, gathers, invites, and welcomes everyone with different gifts and different persuasions? 1 Cor. 12:12-31. How does the church welcome and understand those who do not look like you, act like you, vote like you, or agree with you on the issues of the day?
Curry speaks about how the church bringing unity in Christ out of a diversity of backgrounds, and that this call is greatest challenge of the Church today. Curry grounds our unity not in anything we do but in the very reality of the Incarnation.
If we wish to encounter the Risen Lord we must Go to Galilee, for there you will find Jesus. Matt 28:7. “Galilee” is the world beyond the protective walls of the church where our ministry takes place. Just as the Word came down to us, so too are we to go out into the world.