Tension and Rhythm

Tension. Just the word itself evokes the physical reaction of our muscles tensing. We avoid tense situations and try not to be too uptight. It would be nice to live by some simple principles that would allow us to live tension-free lives. But Jesus tends to challenge an oversimplified view of the world. He announces the arrival of his Kingdom on Earth but then enters on a donkey and dies on a cross. He teaches the disciples not to be “of the world” but says he does not ask for them to be taken “out” of it. He commands us to be perfect, like our heavenly father, and then turns around and says no one is good but God. Following Jesus seems to involve a lot of paradox, but if we are able to hold his teachings in tension, we can find a new path, what we call in the Vineyard, “the radical middle”.