By John D. Pierce

For the last couple of years I’ve stayed firmly on the same message: that many who claim the name Christian pay little or no attention to what Jesus actually said and did. Especially what he called the greatest commandment on which all else hangs.

For many, Jesus is just an eternal escape hatch to be verbally affirmed before running away in search of obscure, isolated biblical texts to justify attitudes and behaviors that have no resemblance to Jesus.

Jesus did not snuggle up to the abusive and powerful political and religious leaders of his day. Instead, he reached out to those most abused by the powerful. That kind of behavior led to a cross, not a coronation.

He loved the outcasts — those who experienced the pain of exclusion and abuse. He cared deeply for those on the edges of life, and did so at great risk.

Today it is popular among the most arrogant citizens of the USA (many who claim to be Christian, even Christian leaders) to ridicule those who respond in the compassionate ways of Jesus to persons who suffer political and social mistreatment and are demeaned or even demonized for their social, ethnic or racial class.

Such snarky, condescension is often laughingly expressed by calling anyone with such sensitivities “snowflakes” as if compassion is a weakness.

As we enter the Advent season, perhaps this is a good time to remind those “with ears to hear” that Jesus did not come as the mighty, sword-wielding messiah as many expected and sought. He came as a vulnerable, low-social-class child who grew into a compassionate and rejected savior.

Save your superheroes for another holiday if you are going to claim the name of Jesus. His call is to self-denial and service to the least of these.

So if by “snowflake” you mean someone who shows empathy for vulnerable people, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

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