Outraged

From Rich Dixon (thank you, friend):

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I’m outraged.

Pick a topic. It’s easy to feel outraged these days. Right now it’s 10 innocent souls who died less than 60 miles from my home because they went grocery shopping on an ordinary Monday afternoon.

Easy to be outraged about that, but there’s plenty of other stuff as well. Just turn on the news. Almost like if we’re not outraged, we’re not paying attention.

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Then I think about this week that started with Palm Sunday, Jesus entering Jerusalem as the people proclaimed Him king of Israel. But as they shouted “Hosanna!” and waved their branches, He knew in a few short days they would turn their backs.

I’d be outraged. But Scripture says Jesus wept for the people He loved.

He knew He would be betrayed and abandoned. He knew He would be tortured, humiliated, and murdered after an illegal, sham trial.

I’d be outraged, but Jesus made arrangements for a final meal. On then eve of His suffering He wanted one final opportunity to spend an evening with His best friends. To wash their feet, to teach lessons they wouldn’t understand until later.

To show them how ingredients of an ancient ritual would become symbols of a new covenant of the heart.

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If I’m going to follow Jesus, maybe I should talk to Him about my outrage. When I confront injustice maybe I can be sad, or even angry, without dragging around this anchor of outrage.

Because that’s what it is, this in-the-background sense of outrage at events that seem – well – outrageous. It’s an anchor, and I suspect I’m not the only one dragging it around.

Jesus confronted lots of injustice. Sometimes He wept. Sometimes He turned over tables. But He did it all with love, always willing to sit together over a meal, to forgive, to offer grace.

No outrage.