No where else is there a higher likelihood of imposters than amongst believers. Drunks in a pub get inebriated differently and they piss on themselves at different times. At parties, people eat at different speeds and different rations and then void at different capacities. In schools and other learning institutions, the pace of learning is different as well as the applications of the acquired knowledge. In relationships, the bliss and battles are quite varied and specialised. In businesses, the competitions and takeovers are acutely different from the manner of enterprenuers as well as to each customer base.
But in religion, although the word is the same and worship almost atypical, any deviation from a standard behaviour is unexpected.
From those prostrating themselves before faith healers to those strapping themselves with explosives in the name of their faith, the behaviour is no different from that of a herd of sheep. The follow a call and tow a line like a string of beads.
Yet, what happened when the Master was on earth? He had personal encounters with individuals while the Pharisees and Saducees were standing as one in opposing Him. Think of the woman with issue of blood for twelve years; she was alone in touching His garment and being healed. What of the Samaritan woman at the well of David? She was alone drawing water, her sixth husband at home. So too was Zachious the tax collector up the sycamore tree. So too was Lazarus in the tomb dead for four days. So too was Nicodemus when he sought the Master in the dead of the night. So too was the rich young lawyer who was sad at being taught of storing his riches in heaven. So too was traitorous Judas Iscariot when Jesus called him friend on betraying Him with a kiss. So too was the doubting Thomas when he was asked to put his finger through the wounds.
Today, many are we conforming to a set religion. We are primed to some blessings of riches and good family and health that anything short does not come as blessing. Yet, how much are we blessed without work when we don't have to pay taxes to a corrupt system or be robbed by thugs? How blessed are we when we are single and no prospects of cheating partners hurting us and making us murderous? How blessed are we when sickly and thus not participating in some meaningless grandstanding? How blessed as individuals are we when we dont have to wear a mask of religion but instead accept God's grace as it is, destined purposely for us and not as prescribed by some pastor who himself is as fake as his sheep?
Christ finds us in our weaknesses where there is no glory for us. He comes to us where we dont have to outshine His blessings for us with our own format of blessings. Christ finds us in our loneliness when we have no true friend but cons who have swindled every penny from us.
In your lowly place, listen and watch carefully, for the Lord is there with you- ALWAYS. Amen.