While I have always noted that our greatest gifts show up as our greatest weaknesses, I have only now recognized how I heard the lesson, but flunked the application.

I grasped that if we think we achieved by our giftedness, we would claim the credit. I got that.

scapegoatBut… The big lesson comes harder.

I am a researcher. I grasp regulations and protocols (which is why I do all right now working as a security guard). The minutiae of legal process make sense (which I sense that you sense is nonsense, okay).

When I stand with others in a struggle for justice I can argue using the dominator’s own rule book. I do my homework. Eyes wide open.

So when I am persecuted, slandered, betrayed, cast out as a scapegoat, I respond in the same way.

English: Statue of the Crucifixion of Jesus ou...

Statue of the Crucifixion of Jesus outside of Campion Hall. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Wrong! That is my call for you. Since that’s what Jesus does for us I just follow the example of Jesus. But I didn’t follow through on that to its inevitable conclusion, Jesus never defended himself by proving the falseness of the arguments against Him! Jesus died. When I was led out to the slaughter I forgot to die (to self).

I can’t take back the way I have responded, nor would I want to do so. It took this long, this many crucifixions, for me to make the distinctions. And even at that, it did not come through careful analysis, but through an irrefutable vision. (Honestly, my brain works fine, it is just housed in a very thick skull.)

“I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live I live by believing in God’s Son, who loved me and took the punishment for my sins” (Galatians 2:20 God’s Word©).

Until this week I did not realize I forgot to crucify my reputation on that cross. Proclaiming Jesus crucified and risen amounts to a more important case to make than my human reputation. Ouch!