A BOOK REVIEW

SET BAR HIGH

Then the Whisper Put on Flesh by Brian Blount has helped me to see the gospel not only with fresh eyes but also how life experiences can affect the way we receive the gospel message. For African Americans, Jesus was a very welcome symbol of freedom, justice, and ethics. This perspective was different from the way Chinese immigrants saw Jesus. As a PTA president, I had a chance to talk with parents about the gospel, and they responded that “Jesus is a foreign God" or "a white god.” Could it be that we have been presenting God outside of a Chinese cultural context?


I am amazed and grateful for how African Americans saw their story in Jesus. What they saw in Jesus was a reflection of their deep convictions of what is unjust and where humanity has gone wrong. It is the imago Dei calling out from the depths of their soul. It was a natural cry for justice, for freedom, for love and honor. It was a deep soul recognition of Jesus. In the depths of human injustice, the stripping away of dignity, the fall into nothingness, and the act of being trampled on they saw the true and living God. They saw Jesus as the superior leader, teacher, prophet, and savior like the one depicted in the book of Hebrews.


What is it about Jesus that appeals to me? I admire how high he sets the bar on the definition of love. Any lower would be a fraudulent love. No other act of love, form of love, or teaching on love can come close to describing the height, width, and depth of God’s love other than Jesus. That high bar means there is room in God’s heart for us, and there is room for us to be inclusive of others.  


This high bar will be the place where I fix my eyes on. It is what I can point others to. It will shape my sermons, my prayer, my attitude, and my decisions. It will constantly be my hope in loving people that I find difficult. It will keep my eyes above the waters as my team and I lay the foundations of Grace Alive Fellowship.

~ May Lee

WOW! Director of Discernment and Pastor of Grace Alive Fellowship, a new church plant that meets for worship every first Friday of the month at 21 Pell Street in NYC.