What WOULD Jesus Do?

While driving to work in the morning, I amuse myself by reading the license plates of my fellow commuters.  I saw one this morning that said, “WWJD IDO”. What Would Jesus Do, I do.  Of course, I amused myself by thinking of the alternate meaning, “Whatever Wynona Judd Does, I do.”  That could be interesting.
I have nothing but the deepest respect for those people who are so sure of their faith, so willing to share that belief that they find ways to show it.  I have seen other religious personalized plates but this one in particular made me stop and wonder just how this person follows through on his proclamation (or her proclamation, it’s dark in the morning and I haven’t seen the driver).
I want to stop him and ask him several questions.  Oh, I don’t want to ask why he chose that plate or what denomination he follows.  I do want to ask him these questions:
Are you really sincere in doing what Jesus did, the things that we have records of?
Are you willing to do things because they are right, not because they are easy or popular?  Are you ready to incorporate your beliefs into every aspect of your life because you will be watched to see if you actually live up to what you’re preaching?  Are you ready to answer the questions that others will have about those beliefs?  Even if you don’t have THE answers, do you have YOUR answers and can you explain how this works for you?  What would Jesus do?
Jesus cleared out the money changers and peddlers from the temple.  Are you willing to stand up and fight, actively fight, against businesses that use religion or barely veiled religious concepts to sell their (definitely NOT religious) merchandise?  Are you willing to boycott those companies that have questionable practices, such as carrying merchandise that is made in countries where labor laws do not protect the workers?  Are you willing to do without the things that our culture says are necessities if you don’t truly need them?
Jesus regularly ate with the tax collectors, prostitutes, “foreigners” and others were considered barely human by his culture and certainly were not worth being with.  He made a point of going out among the lepers and the sick, even to the point of touching those who were called “untouchable”.  Are you willing to socialize, share meals and generally hang out with those people who are outcasts, considered to be the dregs of society?  Are you willing to be with AIDS patients, share a meal with the homeless?  Are you willing to embrace, openly and with a glad heart, anyone who is different than you?  How about the GBLT community?  Would you champion their causes, such as being able to have their partner covered by their healthcare, having a legally recognized marriage or the adoption of any child?  Will you work to get rid of prejudice and discrimination based on any physical characteristic—race, gender, body size or age?  Are you willing to allow people to join with you and not exclude anyone who expresses the same beliefs, regardless of who (or what) they are?
Jesus did not begin his ministry until he was 30.  Then he (apparently) quit his carpentry job and began to travel throughout the area, teaching and preaching to the people who gathered to hear him.  Are you willing to put aside your own work, hobby or pastime so that you can share your talents with others?  Are you willing to give up family and friends to travel and teach others if that is how you are supposed to share your beliefs?
Jesus reprimanded the Pharisees more than once, and spoke about religious “show” instead of religious living.  Are you ready to stand up against the very religion you follow and belong to?  Are you willing to shake up the congregation and challenge them to live their avowed beliefs?  Are you ready to question and chastise the leaders within your church when they do not follow the spirit of the law as well as the letter of the law?  Are you willing to be seen as a heretic within your own religious community because of your adherence to doing as Jesus did?
Jesus was arrested, tried and convicted, then put to death.  Are you willing to face legal action because of your beliefs?  Go to court? Face the judge and jury and stand firm in your religious convictions, knowing that they will lead to criminal conviction?  Are you prepared to be jeered at, humiliated, beaten, maybe even killed for your beliefs?
Jesus did all of these things and more.  Jesus was a man who had a message to share.  He believed in it and was willing to do whatever it took to tell others.  He also believed in that message enough to live it.  He was a revolutionary, willing to buck the system, go against the traditional ways, the religious beliefs of his time and even his spiritual leaders in order to present that message in his life.
Do you have a message that you want to share?  How far will you go to share it?  Are you willing to do whatever it takes?  Even just putting it on your license plate is a start.

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