Prayer #35: Alpha & Omegabet Soup

Emily (on coaching track for my old parish): You can tell the kids go to Catholic school. Last night I corrected someone for not being kind and she was like, "I know, I know ... it's not what Jesus would say."

Prayer #35: Alpha & Omegabet Soup

WWJD = What Would Jesus Do?

WWJS = What Would Jesus Say?

WKOHWJOIHWAT = What Kind of Hamburger Would Jesus Order If He Were Alive Today?

Hmm. That one doesn't fit on a T-shirt. Shame, because I think it's one of the most pressing questions of our time. Well, not about the hamburger. But rather why we presume to ask at every juncture how Jesus would react to a given situation. Because frankly, I have no idea how the real Jesus would react.

The Jesus of beatific Sunday school pictures would raise his two fingers in peace, with that slightly blank, slightly bored look on his face, and reach whatever decision he had in front of him with a direct inward call to the Almighty.

I am not capable of that.

The Jesus of holy cards stuck in my grandmother's hall mirror would have the right words for every occasion, and never have to stoop to cross or frustrated exchanges.

I am not capable of that.

The Jesus hanging broken on all the crosses in every church around the world would never question what he had to do. WWID = What Would I Do? Try INRI instead.

I am not capable of that.

Then I think of the Jesus who became so angry when the temple was turned into a market. And I remember how aloof he was with the woman who was begging for her daughter to be healed.

And I am capable of that ... but in all the backward ways. I'm never righteously angry. I'm never aloof in an effort to teach or to deepen faith. Instead, I'm just nitpicky and grouchy and frustrated and whiny, all of which amounts to a big pile of heartache and sorrow and not a shred of clarity about what Jesus -- fully divine AND fully human -- would really do.

So let's put aside all the things I'm not capable of, Lord, and look at what I can do. Can I practice loving? Yes. Can I try forgiveness? Yes. Can I attempt patience? Yes. And will you help me out me out every step of the way?



So that's what Jesus would do.