At 7 a.m. as I got in my car to drive across Nashville, I prayed. It was a very sincere prayer for God to bring me out of my own inward focus to an outward focus. I asked God to help me to reach out, beyond myself. It's so easy as I pour so much energy into education to become so focused on internals.
I am blessed to go to a school that has devotionals before every class. Most are quick. Most don't get to my soul. This professor is different. Twice, he has gotten to my soul. As we started class with the devotional, the familiar screen of Nooma came up. Now I know Rob Bell is controversial right now but let's just put that aside. I was excited that it was a Nooma video I had not seen.
A snowy scene in the Northern Plains seemed to have nothing to do with talking about first century Galilee. How typical of Bell to start this way. As Bell began to weave the story, he talked about the training of young Hebrew children in the first century. He spoke of their requirement to memorize Torah by the age of 10. After this, boys were weeded out based on their perceived academic ability. Most were sent to go home and learn the family business. Finally, the best of the best of the best are able to be attached to a Rabbi. The student then follows the Rabbi and does everything that they do - they completely emulate the Rabbi's life. They follow so closely that the saying emerges, "may you be covered in the dust of your Rabbi."
Here comes a Rabbi unlike any other. It is a Rabbi that says to fishermen, follow me. It is a Rabbi who says to women, follow me. It is a Rabbi who says to outcasts and sinners, follow me. As Jesus says follow me, He was calling them to follow as a student, a disciple, to emulate their Rabbi, Jesus.
That's my favorite quote today.
May you be covered in
the dust of your Rabbi.
the dust of your Rabbi.
Since Saturday, this phase echos in my soul. If you want to see the video, you can here. This quote also reminds me of another favorite quote of mine: Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words. St. Francis of Assisi. There is a great article by Shane Claiborne on Huffington Post; you can read it here.
It's not what we believe but how well we follow the Masters that matter most. Doctrine is important but it becomes empty words without living like Jesus.
Ever get around someone and you just can tell they are a follower of Jesus? They just show His love and compassion without ever saying a word? That person is covered with the dust of their Rabbi.
What does it mean to you to be covered in the dust of your Rabbi?