There’s a lot of talk about supremacy lately. Here’s one definition: “the state or condition of being superior to all others in authority, power, or status.” I’m not here to wade into the depths of systemic oppression, racial supremacy and the evils perpetrated from the belly of these beasts. It occurs to me that instead, I might start somewhere much more basic: owning my own problems.
In their book Unsettling Truths, Mark Charles and my friend Soong-Chan Rah delve deep into some really tough historical issues for our nation. But one passage in particular sparked a “check in my spirit” as some of us in charismatic circles say. It caused me to stop in my tracks and ask, “is this me?” Here’s the excerpt:
“Belief in exceptionalism is fundamentally related to how people view themselves in relationship to God. The sin of setting up one’s own image as the ultimate ideal results in an exaggerated self-perception.”
No matter our political or theological leanings or what we may think the root causes of our nation’s ills may be, it’s pretty clear if we follow Jesus that we are to have no other gods. The Father, Son and Spirit alone are to sit on the throne of our hearts. Yet nearly every day I try to claw my way back on the throne. This “me supremacy” leads me every time to dark places. I set up my “own image as the ultimate ideal” and from there flows all sorts of pain.
So this week, if we’re looking for a way to put our faith in action, perhaps the best place to start would be to refocus on who is truly Supreme. By taking time every day, throughout the day, to re-commit our submission to Jesus, we get off the throne, take up our cross and discover the beautiful upside down truth of God’s kingdom: it is in death to ourselves that we find the life that is truly life.
Grace and Peace,