True Christian faith is not just the beliefs we affirm, and the actions that we perform, but it is a matter of the heart. They say the longest distance is the space between our heads and our hearts. It certainly can be. The head wants certainty; the heart wants assurance. In our practice of faith, we pray that the Holy Spirit would work in us to enable our hearts to be active. Where the religious leaders of Jesus’ time wanted strict adherence to customs, Jesus made it customary to show compassion. Seems to me that the only rule Jesus had was to welcome the lost, the last, the lonely, and the least.
Much is being said about making America great again. What greatness means is causing such con- flict and grief. If being great means building walls, separating children from their parents, disrespecting our neighbors to the north and south, and embracing dictators, then I don’t want any part of being great. Instead, I want America to be GOOD again. I want all of us to be kind, compassionate, welcoming, and generous. I believe that is what Jesus is saying here in Mark 7 (and in his total life). That is the heart of Jesus, and the heart of our faith. Compassion rules! Peace, Pastor Gary