Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Road Less Traveled

As we begin a new sermon series this week on Jesus' teachings from discipleship from the Gospel of Mark, our key text will be Mark 8:27-38, which can be read here.

As I have been reading the texts for the upcoming weeks, a poem has repeatedly run through my head--Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken," a poem that has been a favorite of mine since I learned it in school growing up.  It may be overquoted, yes--but it still captures my imagination in a way few other pieces of literature have:

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 

There are lots of ways to interpret this poem, but here's what it has made me think about lately: that whether we realize it or not, we who have chosen--and are continually choosing--the way of discipleship are making an intentional decision to walk the road less traveled by.

It is an unexpected road;
sometimes it can feel like a road that we are the first to walk, or walk alone;
it's a more challenging than anticipated road, if we fully commit to walking on it;
it is a road that rarely lets us come back to follow the other option once we have given ourselves to it;
But above all, it is the road that makes all the difference.

In Mark 8,  while the disciples are literally on the road on the way to Caesarea Philippi, Jesus begins to reveal to his disciples what a life of discipleship--of following him--really looks like.  What it might be like to choose that road less traveled by, following Jesus in his way of servanthood and surrender and unconditional love and choosing to see when we might rather remain blind.  This Sunday's text is seen almost universally as the linchpin of Mark's Gospel--the moment when, after being challenged to voice the truth of who they believe Jesus to be, the disciples get a glimpse of the unusual places that path will take them.  The road of following Jesus, their leader declares, is not going to look like anything they've seen before, or anything they might have expected when they first chose to follow the Messiah.  But it is going to be the road that leads to life.

How do we walk this road that leads to life abundant, life unusual, life laid down, life that makes all the difference together?  Read this week's verses, then join us on Sunday as we explore this Jesus Way together.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Happy Anniversary, Broadneck!

On September 12, Broadneck Baptist Church will be celebrating the big 3-0!  What a journey we have been on together for the past three decades.  Local reporter Wendi Winters recently visited with us at Broadneck and did a great article on our anniversary for the Capital--click below to give it a read, and join us for our various opportunities to serve, worship, and celebrate this month, starting with our Habitat build and picnic on Saturday!

Around Broadneck: Church celebrates 30th anniversary