Recently I updated my computer’s operating system, only to result in my printer not working. Come to find out the printer company had not written new drivers to coincide with the release of this new operating system. I discovered this after researching computer forums (fun stuff), several tech support calls (my most favorite thing), buying a new printer that was compatible (supposedly), returning that printer, doing more research, and finally getting a printer that works splendidly.

BTW, I am the IT guy in my house. The hours are long and the pay not so good.

Technology is such a time saver, until it doesn’t work. The reality is that in a time of diversity and rapid change, incompatibility is standard fare.

In our current series in the Book of Esther I’ve been reminded of this reality in following Jesus. Jesus was incompatible with 2 groups of people – the people who thought He was taking this God thing a bit too far, and the religious folks who thought He should join them in being mean.

It seems we get to engage in the same struggle… The Bible clearly points to this.

Peter said Of course, your former friends are surprised when you no longer plunge into the flood of wild and destructive things they do. So they slander you.” 1 Peter 4:4 NLT

Paul saidThe Message that points to Christ on the Cross seems like sheer silliness to those hellbent on destruction, but for those on the way of salvation it makes perfect sense. This is the way God works, and most powerfully as it turns out.” 1 Corinthians 1:18 Message

On the other hand Paul said “Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the purpose of passing judgment on his opinions.” Romans 14:1 NASB

And Jesus said (the Message Version paraphrase) “Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults–unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging.” Matthew 7:1-2 Message

It seems to me that the challenge is to live in the radical middle: so in love with Jesus that people accuse you of being foolish, and so in love with people that others accuse you of being too accepting.

Living in the radical middle means you will be incompatible with those content to live a life lacking in love (for whatever reason). The drivers just won’t work.

However, Jesus understands and is able to resolve the hardest of situations. He did that with me, as I originally believed loving God shouldn’t go too far…

At the very least (and most important) He gives a peace which surpasses our understanding and helps us endure incompatibility.

So the next time I find myself in a similar conflict, I purpose to keep moving toward the radical middle. I want to let my love for God and my love for people grow to uncomfortable depths.

And I will keep praying that everyone updates their software to work with MAC.

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