Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Black Sheep of the Family (10/03/13)
Yet, my always loving grandmother affectionately known as Nana angrily labeled me “meshumed, (traitor)! Moreover, my grandfather and mother were convinced I was a hypnotized misguided cultist who needed immediate professional intervention. Though their rhetoric and attitude hurt my flesh, I felt something good within my spirit , perhaps sensing for the first time that I was suffering for the sake of Christ. After all I had just announced to the mishpocah (family) that I had found JESUS, our Jewish Messiah!
Back in the 1970’s when this scenario occurred I was in my mid twenties. Then it was a rarity for a Jew to claim Jesus as his or her personal savior. My family reacted in typical fashion to the “good news.” Contrary to our religiously observant ancestors, my family was no more than culturally Jewish. Therefore they knew little of the rich spiritual heritage and blessing that comes with being born Jewish.
But they did know some things about Christians. Christian’s murdered Jews in the name of Christ during the crusades and the inquisition. Six million Jews were annihilated in concentration camps allegedly by Christians. And fresh in the minds of the elderly members of my family remained personal memories of Jews being slaughtered during the Russian Pogroms. Thus, avoidance of any meaningful contact with Christians and “their Jesus,” was the rule.
“A crutch.” That’s what it is a crutch.” My father’s spoken observance influenced the rest of the family group nodding their agreement at his revelation. Me, the black sheep of the family. Former drug user, juvenile delinquent, general ruffian and trouble maker found another crutch.
I replied, “Yes, salvation and knowing God is a crutch, since we’re all injured and dying from sin we need a crutch to walk uprightly.” “Thing is, this crutch works for all eternity, and nothing can replace it.”
God in his infinite wonder and wisdom used the black sheep to introduce the lamb to some members of the lost sheep of the house of Israel. It took a couple of decades, but through prayer and, I like to think in small measure, my living testimony, most of my immediate family members have come to know Christ. All glory to the LAMB of GOD!
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