From The Mockingbird Devotional, today’s entry was written by Matt Johnson.

For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. (1 Corinthians 1:18, ESV)

You’ve heard the spiel. It’s practically a Christian summer camp mantra: you have a God-shaped hole in your life, but you’ve been trying to fill it with non-God-shaped stuff. And that’s why you suffer or feel empty. So if you’ll just fill the void with God-shaped stuff, you’ll feel a whole lot better.

I’ve worried whether anyone would stick around if they had an inkling of what new life looks like “after God takes over.” Contrary to what the majority of the Bible says about human experience, the collective consciousness is somehow haunted with the idea that new living destines us for financial stability, deep relationships, or glowing health. But this picture is unreal; it does not account for certain future pain and difficulty, nor does it prepare us to see that God’s chosen way is often through these roads of suffering.

Thomas Cole – The Consummation of the Empire

The Corinthian people, much like us, are enamored of the mountaintop perception of theology and life—of moral superiority and health-wealth gospels. Paul, instead, fixes his attention to the crucifix, something he permits is foolishness to the world, but is also the wisdom of God.

It is true that in light of Christ’s sacrifice, we are guaranteed his resurrection, but this does not mean we have inoculated ourselves to the cross. A clearer picture of the reality of Christian life lights upon the counterintuitive-ness of the power of death; God disarms us by operating through death and resurrection, not through our multistep successful living schemes. While we’re busy twittering ourselves into a tizzy, God covertly communicates his power in the “weakness” of the cross.