I believe in Bigfoot. My decision to believe in him pretty much comes down to granting the benefit of the doubt to so many people who must have seen something. To be totally honest, I’d have to say I really just want it to be true. I want to believe there is a big hairy humanoid out there who has managed to stay off the grid and keep us guessing all these years. I want to be proud of the guy (or gal) for so skillfully evading capture and only allowing the scarcest of photographic evidence. And, I don’t mind if you think I’m crazy because there’s really nothing at stake in it for me. For me to believe in my Sasquatch friend costs me nothing. Tomorrow, if someone was able to prove in no uncertain terms that it’s all been a hoax, as sad as I would be, my life would carry on without missing a beat.
Believing in Jesus is easy. Following Jesus will cost you your life. Unlike making a decision to believe, following Jesus puts some skin in the game. When I choose to follow Jesus, I am diving headlong into a whole universe of messy relationships and complete trust in a will that is not my own. To live with Jesus is to embrace the reality that every Christian is a leader. We are obligated to the other parts of a Body and, therefore, give up the luxury of being along for the ride. Instead, we give ourselves over to a life lived in the beauty and chaos of community. There is all manner of risk and adventure and discomfort along the way. There is also that which Jesus promised to those who dare pass through the threshold of belief into the realm of discipleship: that we will know and be known...that, in Christ and in Christian leadership, we are loved more in the confession of sin, not less...we are lifted up in our weakness, not rejected...we are leaders as we follow, not followers or fans. What a glorious dance to follow Jesus in a life of leading each other into the depths of humility and real relationship!