If a Man Barks on the Bus, do you Bark Back?

It’s super ironic to me that Easter and April Fools’ Day fall on the same week this year. It’s as if Jesus planned for this sort of thing to happen when He played they best April Fools’ Day prank ever when he “died” . . . because He didn’t.

Don’t hate on that dad joke either; it’s never too early to start practicing them.

With Easter comes eggs, and with eggs come chickens, and speaking of chickens, I’m one of the biggest ones of them all. I’m not the kind with feathers, but I’m the kind that’s scared to cross the road, like this:

To begin any sort of relationship with anyone is scary. It requires trust and vulnerability. However, entering into a relationship with someone “different than you” is another ball game. By different, I mean someone who may look different, talk different, believe differently or live a different lifestyle that’s more waffles, while yours is more pancakes. The truth is, there are some strange people out there, and to begin a relationship with anyone who appears to be different automatically sends up red flags. Whether it’s the man barking to himself on the bus, the woman who doesn’t appear to know any English or the high school kid spitting of streams of curse words with bliss that Lil’ Wayne would be jealous of, there is a lot of weirdness and intimidation out there and to step into relationship with that is scary. The funny thing though is that I’m different too. I almost barked back.

To begin a relationship is hard. If someone seems crazy or doesn’t even appear to speak the same language, how hard is it to even say “hello,” or much less go into a full-blown conversation with them. Even harder than that is starting a genuine relationship with that person, and then the thoughts creep in of “we have nothing in common, so what’s the point of even trying.” There is a point, and the point is that although relationships are scary or may seem pointless, relationships are transformative. They may cost something, but they’re always worth more than they cost.

Remember this: Jesus began a relationship with us.

In all of our difference, weirdness and evil, He stepped in, said “hello” and offered a relationship and every resource He had. It cost Him His life. The bread and water He offered weren’t bread and water that would meet the immediate needs of hunger and thirst, but they met the need of our eternal soul-longing for something more. He didn’t offer us money, but He offered us hope. He offered us healing. He offered us love, and He offered us a chance to go into relationship.

It may be Easter, but don’t be a chicken. Let’s think about this: How can we step into a scary relationship, whether it be with a neighbor or a person sitting next to us in class or on the bus?

Let’s start by saying hello.

Happy Easter!