Rules, Rules Rules. How tired do you get of hearing someone tell you the rule for this is this and the rule for that is that. Governments are always making new rules. There’s even new rules on how much pot you can own without breaking the rules. Do you ever just get tired of the rules?
Or are you the good little sheep that follows the shepherd and does exactly as he says. Drink this water, eat grass over here, NO, not there, over here. If you don’t listen to the shepherd, he sends a dog out to nip at your heals until you give in and run back in the direction that the shepherd told his good little sheep to run. Is it always safest to stick with the herd, or flock in this case, and make sure you listen to the rules of the shepherd?
There’s even rules when you spend your hard earned money on an airplane ticket so that you can get home to your family and your business. But the airline company can take that away from you because they have a rule. And when you don’t get off the plane, they can send in their dogs to nip you in the heal, or beat you up, and haul you off the plane. And it’s their so called “rule”, so they are right and you are wrong.
Don’t be a NON-CONFORMIST. Stick with the rules and you will do just fine son. Don’t turn left when the world goes right. Don’t sail the ocean blue because you will fall off the edge. Don’t think you’re ‘Wright’ and want to fly like the birds. Don’t create an assembly line and create efficiency in the building of automobiles so that everyone can ‘afFord’ to drive one. And don’t create a website that people can put their faces on and socialize with people that they don’t want to pick up the phone and call.
How about the most famous non-conformist of all time – Jesus Christ. Even if you are a non-believer, you probably heard of the guy. He’s the one that came into the world to save sinners like you and I. He’s the one that turned water into wine (I like wine) and told us that the bread represented the body of Christ. He’s the one that taught love and respect through the use of parables or stories to allow us to learn in a way that was never heard of in his day. At that point in humanity, people were taught to listen or be beheaded. If you were daring enough to want to use your own head, the emperor’s dogs would take it from you. Conform to what your emperor tells you, or you will be dealt with as an example to others who might think of being a non-conformist.
Yet there was this one, unarmed, loving, hippy kind of guy going from village to village talking about the love of his Father. Talking about how each of us was created in the vision of his Father. Each of us bringing something special to his kingdom. Each in our own unique and special way. To utilize the gifts that have been given to us in the most genuine and special ways we can.
The Easter story tells us that Jesus was crucified on Good Friday and he rose on Easter Sunday. Easter is the most important celebration within the Christian calendar. The resurrection story is what all is based upon. A few thousand years later, Christians celebrate this very important time. The resurrection provides evidence to believers that, if you live a life that follows Jesus Christ, you to will some day live eternally.
So when did the beliefs and lifestyle of the most famous non-conformist of all time become so structured. Humans got in the way. Organized religion, of all kinds, have written rule books on how their followers, the sheep, are to respond to the leader of the religious right. Jesus taught us to think freely. To believe in the greater powers of his Father. Not to fear his Father, but to love him. Not to be fearful of doing wrong, but to admit when we have wronged, ask for forgiveness and then move on and not do the wrong again. He also taught us to accept and forgive. Forgiving is not easy when the hurt is deep, but forgiveness is necessary for the hurt to heal.
Non-conformity moves ahead while the righteous make rules to control and limit the growth of individuals.
As you celebrate this Easter season, ask yourself a question, “if I was Jesus, what would I do to step away from the herd to create greatness for myself, or my family, or my community or my ‘whatever’ is important to me.”